What is a Neighbourhood Plan?

As a result of the Localism Bill communities have been given the opportunity to put forward a plan for areas not covered by:

1. A Joint Core Strategy ,and
2. A Local Authority Plan (In our case South Northants Council).
There is no proscribed structure for these plans, as they are intended to reflect the particular requirements of the community which prepares it, as long as they do not conflict with Joint Core Strategy or the Local Authority Plan.

Harpole was acknowledged as a special case due to it's proximity and interaction with the Northampton Related Development Areas, and as such Harpole Parish Council were granted £20,000 and given Front Runner Status by the government for the production of a Neighbourhood Plan. This reflects the importance of a Neighbourhood Plan which if approved has equivalent status to a Local Authority Plan for planning purposes.

A Neighbourhood Plan once prepared has to be:
1. Approved as legitimate and representative by Independent Inspection, and
2. Confirmed by a Community Referendum


Harpole’s Neighbourhood Plan is being developed based around 5 topics . Consultation to get input and feedback will form a key part of each working groups development of the topic plans. Minutes when available from the meetings will be listed as '.doc' downloads unless otherwise specified.As there is some overlap between groups - ie 'look of the village' and 'natural assets' feedback comments on certain issues may be in any of the relevant groups.

Working Group 1: Village housing & maintain/enhance the look/character of the Village
Group 1 Minutes 25th June 2015
Open Day Feedback

Working Group 2: Economic Development, Businesses, Employment and Retail:
Group 2 Minutes 20th April 2015
Group 2 meeting 19th May 2015
Michael Orton Jones Ideas 18/05/15
Matt Smith Thoughts 18/05/15
Simon Drinkwater thoughts May 2015
DCB report for openday July 2015

Working Group 3: Natural Assets, Open Space and Countryside:
Group 3 Lorraine Boot
Group 3 Minutes 14th April 2015
Group 3 Minutes 29th April 2015
Group 3 Minutes 9th June 2015
Group 3 Minutes 16th June 2015
Wookle Draft June 2015
Allotment Draft June 2015
Country Park Draft June 2015
Open Day feedback 1 (.pdf)
Open Day feedback 2 (.pdf)
Open Day feedback 3 (.pdf)
Open Day feedback 4 (.doc)
Open Day feedback 5 (.doc)

Working Group 4: Traffic and Highways including Transport:
Open Day feedback Analysis
Open Day Responses
Traffic and Transport Working Group meeting 20.4.15
Traffic and Transport Working Group meeting 18.5.15
Traffic and Transport Working Group meeting 21.09.15
Traffic Counts June 2015

Working Group 5 - Local Services, including Social Services, Harpole Charities and Education:

Harpole Neighbourhood Plan Updated Consultation Strategy Introduction and context

The following consultation strategy and programme ensures the delivery of a “consultation statement” that accords with the definition of such a document as set out in Regulation 15 of the NP Regulations (setting out a consultation statement as being a statutory part of the package to be submitted for examination), which reads as follows:

15(2) In this regulation “consultation statement” means a document which –
(a) Contains details of the persons and bodies who were consulted about the proposed neighbourhood development plan;
(b) Explains how they were consulted;
(c) Summarises the main issues and concerns raised by the persons consulted; and
(d) Describes how these issues and concerns have been considered and, where relevant, addressed in the proposed neighbourhood development plan.

For the final Neighbourhood Plan to reflect the views of those living and working in Harpole, it is important that opportunities to consult on key issues, options and proposals, and to feed into the process of developing the Plan are made available to all who wish to get involved.
The Steering Group is keen that the Plan for the parish should belong to those living and working in the area and recognises that the views of the community and stakeholders are needed to shape the Plan as it completed. The Plan will play a role in determining land use over the next 20 years, with the Local Planning Authority looking to the Steering Group to lead this work, however development would have a limited impact on land use given the current draft Joint Core Strategy. Nonetheless, it was agreed that having a Neighbourhood Plan in place was an opportunity to ensure a positive impact on the village from any future development.

Previous consultation:
The suggested Programme of activity builds on feedback from previous consultation which includes launch of the Neighbourhood Plan through :
* consultation and input with the Parish Council including discussion at PC meetings:
* consultation with the Street Champions including a meeting specifically set up and held in Harpole Church:
* opportunity for residents to be updated at open meeting held at Live and Let Live pub in the village:
* A questionnaire consultation undertaken in November 2011, prior to changes to the WNJCS, which sought to gather views from residents on what was important to them about Harpole, identifying key issues and concerns, and understanding how the community wanted the parish to be developed over the next 20 years.:
Nearly 500 questionnaires were returned to the Steering Group, with up to four members of a household responding to each question. A team of street champions delivered and collected questionnaires and this efficient operation led to a comprehensive picture of the priorities for the community:
* A well-publicised questionnaire consultation results exhibition in April 2012 using graphs and charts to see results “at a glance”. This provided a further opportunity to comment on the Plan and priorities for the village
* Updates on the Neighbourhood Plan process from the Steering Group via monthly Parish News
* Leafleting through every door on four previous occasions over the past year to raise awareness of the Plan and questionnaire consultation:
* Posters to publicise the Plan and to encourage volunteers to come forward to help with consultation
* A second Open Day was held in Feb 2014 to get village response to revised WNJCS. This was very well attended and 1379 objection forms were completed by attendees. The submission of the forms to WNJPU was publicised and resulted in the Harpole views being the full front page of the local newspaper (Chron and Echo) on 27th Feb 2014.
* Harpole Action Team also has a website which allows all key documents to be shared and enables residents to contact the team with queries, input, comments etc

Click on the following to download information files listed

Questionnaire Response Spreadsheet [.xls]
Question Priorities [.doc]
Outline of the Process [.doc]
Original Questionnaire [.doc]
NP newsletter June 2012 [.pdf]