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Surrounded by Neighbourhood Plans?

28th July 2014 @ 6:06am – by Tarvin Webteam
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Tattenhall recently had their Neighbourhood Plan adopted by CWaC and this set me wondering whether Tarvin is becoming a "plan free zone".
In effect CWaC's Executive on 4 June 2014 decided to 'make' their neighbourhood plan and it now forms part of the Development Plan for Cheshire West and Chester and will be taken into account in local planning decisions.

In Tarvin we obviously had developed a Parish Plan over the last few years and this website is one tangible outcome ( a good one I hope you mutter). Most of the recommendations in the Parish Plan have been tacked either in full or part and we will summarise the progress the Implementation team have made in a future article.

Now Neighbourhood Plans seem to be in a different league in terms of scope, influence if adopted and certainly demand a lot of effort.

First of all though what are our neighbours doing?

Thelatest map I can find which summarises neighbourhood applicationsis interesting.
We are almost surrounded by potential plans ( the areas coloured red). For example Huxley parish Council have applied to have the area of the civil parish of Huxley, Foulk Stapleford, Clotton Hoofield, Bruen Stapleford, Burton, Hatton and Iddinshall designated as a "Neighbourhood Area" for the purposes of then producing a Neighbourhood Plan for that area. (Sounds a bit like Russian Empire expansion to me!)

So what are Neighbourhood Plans all about?
Well as usual there is a lot of info on the Web and this Quick Guide to Neighbourhood Plans is a very good introduction.

I reproduce the first paragraph which clearly summarises the position

Under the Localism Act:
A Neighbourhood Plan is a community-led framework for guiding the future development and growth of an area. It may contain a vision, aims, planning policies, proposals for improving the area or providing new facilities, or allocation of key sites for specific kinds of development.

Neighbourhood plans relate to the use and development of land and associated social, economic and environmental issues. It may deal with a wide range of issues (like housing, employment,heritage and transport) or it may focus on one or two issues that are of particular importance in a local area.

A Neighbourhood Plan will be subject to examination and referendum and then form part of the Local Development Plan. This statutory status gives Neighbourhood Plans far more weight than some other local planning documents, such as parish plans, community plans and village design statements.

On a couple of occasions I understand Tarvin Parish Council have voted not to proceed with a Neighbourhood Plan in the near future.
Were these good decisions based on a thorough assessment or simply a realistic view that the energy to create a plan could not be generated from the usual set of Community volunteers?
I hope the Council will point us to a summary of their deliberations ( or reply to this article)

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