Neighbourhood Planning

20 November 2014

The first meeting took place between Singleton Parish Council and the new Steering Group who are going to work on the Neighbourhood Planning process. Cllr Matthew Lee, Chair of Singleton Parish Council, welcomed Mr Chris Simpson, Doug Goth, David Kay and Jim Pawson to the meeting and told them that their help was very much appreciated. Two more members of the Steering Group couldn’t be here tonight but have pledged their help in the future and they are Mark Clifford and Kath Smith. Although the Steering Group would be heading this process, they will be working in conjunction with the Parish Council as only a Parish Council can take it forward in a parished area. Therefore, with this in mind, at least one member of the Steering Group will attend the monthly Parish Council meetings to ensure everyone is kept up to date.

We were very pleased to welcome Fiona Riley to this meeting. Fiona is the Planning Policy Officer at Fylde Borough Council and came along to offer her advice and guidance. She will remain in touch with us throughout the process and, again, the Parish Council is very grateful for this help.

The Steering Group needs to decide what the key issues they want the Neighbourhood Plan to deal with – housing, employment, transport, heritage, community assets etc. Where do we want Singleton to be in 10/15 years’ time? What is our vision? We already have a lot of information to hand – the Village Design Statement and the Housing Needs Survey from 2011 both contain useful information and are a very good starting point.

Fiona Riley will send model documents, including a Terms of Reference for the Steering Group to work to. All minutes of the meetings will be published on the web site and we shall engage with the community to find out what the issues are and what we want to achieve.

12 November 2014

The Neighbourhood Area Application has been approved by Fylde Borough Council. The official notice and map will be displayed on the two parish noticeboards.

18 August 2014

Singleton’s Neighbourhood Area Application received by Fylde Borough Council and the first consultation period will now commence. Information concerning this was display on the two parish noticeboards and also in the Blackpool Gazette.

July 2014

Singleton Parish Council has started off the process for a designation of a neighbourhood planned area for the whole parish of Singleton. This will cover Singleton Village as well as Mains Lane and Pool Foot Lane areas. We are working in conjunction with Fylde Borough Council and the Community Development Foundation in accordance with Part 5, Regulation 16 of the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012.

Fylde Borough Council is currently working on its own Local Plan which would set out development across Fylde till 2030. The first part of this would be looking at strategic housing and the second part would be looking at employment units. Neighbourhood Plans produced by Parish Councils would become part of the bigger Fylde Development Plan. The local authority would have to consider our Plan alongside their own Local Plan and it would have far more weight than our original Parish Plan. The Important thing to note, however, is that within the Neighbourhood Plan we need to decide where new development is to go. This is not a tool to stop development happening. Development will happen as Fylde currently has to provide 360 houses a year across the borough. We need to see that we get the development we want and which is of benefit to the parish.

We need to have a look at housing needs, creating jobs, infrastructure, facilities, health and deal with climate change. What do we want to see in 10 years or more time? What are our key issues? Do we need more affordable housing and/or housing for older people? Are there any highway issues? There is a lot to think about. The Plan needs to meet a number of legal requirements which Fylde Borough Council can advise on. The process is long and we are looking at between 18 months and 2 years to complete it. We are looking to recruit a Steering Group made up from interested residents of the Parish, which would not only involve the community but also help to share the workload.

The first stage is to submit a plan identifying the area to be covered by the Neighbourhood Plan, together with a statement as to why this land should be designated and a statement saying why we are the appropriate bode to lead this. This is to be submitted to Fylde BC who will have 6 weeks in which to consult on this with bodies such as Lancashire County Council, English Heritage etc.

The second stage is to produce the Neighbourhood Plan itself. This should be supported by evidence and we will be looking to have a wide and inclusive community engagement. Once the Plan has been produced it goes through a pre-submission stage and a further 6 week consultation process begins. Finally the completed Plan is submitted to the local planning authority who will look at the Plan and the Consultation Statement, check on who was consulted and how, a summary of the main issues and concerns and how these issues have been addressed. There will then be a publication consultation for a further 6 week period and then the Plan will be examined by an independent examiner who will check whether the Plan meets the basic conditions and complies with the appropriate legislations. The Plan is then submitted for a referendum in which 50% of people eligible to vote should agree it.