The Henlow Parish Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group
Who we are
The Henlow Parish Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group is made up of a small group of volunteers with an interest in the Parish. The steering group comprises an assembly of seven members who live or work in Henlow Parish.
Debbie Horner (Chair)
Should you have an interest in joining the Henlow Parish Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group, please contact the Clerk of the Parish Council, Mandy Howard by email on Clerk@Henlow-PC.gov.uk or telephone on 01462 811800 for more information.
Neighbourhood Plan Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Neighbourhood Plan?
A Neighbourhood Plan is a planning document that communities can put together to set out how they would like their town, parish or village to develop over the next 15 to 20 years or so. In the case of Henlow Parish, our Neighbourhood Plan area comprises the whole Parish area; hence the Henlow Parish Neighbourhood Plan.
The Henlow Parish Neighbourhood Plan will set out policies relating to how land is used and developed, similar to Central Bedfordshire Council’s (CBC) Local Plan, but at a much more local level.
It will ultimately set the criteria against which any new planning applications will be assessed; hence it has to undergo a number of formal processes to ensure it is robust and well-evidenced. This includes an independent examination and a public referendum.
If successful, the Neighbourhood Plan will be adopted by CBC as part of its Local Plan and Henlow Parish will have set out its detailed policies for development in the Parish in the future.
Why do we need a Neighbourhood Plan for Henlow Parish?
The Neighbourhood Plan can give us a greater say on how we want Henlow Parish to be for future generations: including how new housing is developed, what it should look like, what land should be set aside for employment, what green spaces should be protected or where new ones should go. The RAF Henlow site has been safeguarded as a strategic site for housing and employment in the CBC Local Plan for Henlow Parish and we will help guide design and development here in parallel to the Neighbourhood Plan.
Can we use the Neighbourhood Plan to stop further development in Henlow Parish?
Neighbourhood Plans are not about stopping development, rather shaping it. One of the regulations for neighbourhood planning is that it must comply with strategic plans including the CBC Local Plan. We cannot stop development in Henlow Parish, but we can have a say in the detail of what it might look like in practice.
How long will it take to write the Neighbourhood Plan?
It is not a quick process – the Neighbourhood Plan is going to last 15 to 20 years so we need to get it right. The Neighbourhood Plan is in its early infancy and we are still collecting data from residents. A key part of this process is the Launch Event that will take place on 30th April in conjunction with the Pariah Council AGM. Residents are encouraged to attend to have their say on what they would like to be considered in their Parish.
What area does our Neighbourhood Plan cover?
Our Neighbourhood Plan will cover the whole of Henlow Parish. The Parish Council submitted a Neighbourhood Plan boundary application to CBC which went out to public consultation for six weeks and was approved on 14th August 2014. Further details can be found at http://www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/planning/policy/neighbourhood-planning/areas.aspx
What will our Neighbourhood Plan cover?
This detail will be determined following the Launch Event at the end of April but broadly speaking the Henlow Parish Neighbourhood Plan will cover the following areas:
- Historic Environment
- Natural Environment
- Employment and Economy
One of the benefits of having a Neighbourhood Plan is that it will help enable the Parish Council to receive developer funds (known as S106 or Community Infrastructure Levy), that can then be spent on providing new facilities for the community. Thus, we need to think about what facilities we might need or want in Henlow Parish.
Who is leading the development of our Neighbourhood Plan?
The Neighbourhood Plan has to be formally led by Henlow Parish Council however a steering group comprising both members of the public and local councillors has been established. The members of the Steering Group are listed on the ‘Who we are’ page.
How much will it cost to develop the neighbourhood plan?
The cost of the Neighbourhood Plans varies widely depending on the size of the population, the complexity of the plan and any additional technical studies that might be required. Henlow Parish has applied for and received government funding that is dedicated to communities developing Neighbourhood Plans.
Do you have external support to assist on developing the Neighbourhood Plan?
Yes, we have contracted Woods Hardwick Planning– Richard Murdock and Samantha Boyd – to assist us who are experts in Neighbourhood Planning. The Steering Group are working closely with Richard and Samantha to ensure that the Henlow Parish Neighbourhood Plan is delivered in a timely fashion and incorporates the views of the whole of the Parish.