We could choose to ignore it, but with allocation made by Rother District Council for 75 new homes in Hurst Green Village, our choices were to allow developers and land owners to allocate where and when new houses will be built, or to seek to influence these choices and improve our community through a Neighbourhood Plan.

Neighbourhood Plans are statutory plans, the process for which is legally prescribed, and, when made, form part of the ‘development plan’ for the area.

Neighbourhood Plans must be in general conformity with the strategic policies for an area (Rother District Council’s Local Plan) as well as having regard to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and accord with European Legislation.

Our Neighbourhood Plan will be subject to an independent Examination. It additionally requires a local referendum to be held to ensure that our community has the final say on whether the plan comes into force or not.

To limit the cost to residents, Hurst Green is also seeking assistance in the form of grants and technical support through a central Government programme. For more information on this, go to My Community.

Further reading…

More detailed guidance on the Neighbourhood Plan process is available on the Planning Portal.

The Department for Communities and Local Government has prepared a number of guides and there is more guidance on the Planning Advisory Service website.