Neighbourhood planning is a new(ish) community right that gives local people a direct say over the future of their area. Over 2,200 communities like us have already taken up neighbourhood planning across England.

A neighbourhood plan will give us much more of a say over where new homes, shops and offices are built or what new buildings should look like. We can protect and enhance our  local shops, green spaces or heritage assets for future generations to enjoy in years to come.

Plans usually take a couple of years to pull together and it has to be a real community effort. We’ll have to figure out what we want, and then write a plan that passed certain tests, and then have a local referendum!

So we need local people with useful skills and knowledge: doorknockers, tea makers, public speakers, bunting hangers, map readers, people herders, conversation starters, data processors, dedicated researchers, community campaigners, relationship builders, technical advisors…just a few hours here and there from enough people will make all the difference!

There’s tons of info, tools and templates online, we can get financial support from Government and the Council are there to support us through the process too. There are Neighbourhood Planning Champions who can help for free, and there are lots of experts that we can employ through Government grants.

This website gives a good summary: http://www.neighbourhoodplanning.org/

The neighbourhood planning ‘Roadmap’ gives more detail: http://locality.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Neighbourhood-planning-roadmap-2016.pdf

This one has videos & resources: https://www.thinglink.com/scene/647426465779941378

The nearest completed plans to us are Chalfont St Peter to our west – their plan can be viewed  here and Sudbury Town to our east – their plan can be viewed here.

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