The parish was the first to apply to West Somerset Council to create its own plan which would give local people power to shape the future growth and development in the place where they live. The area for the proposed plan is the part of Stogumber parish lying outside Exmoor National Park’s boundary.
Over 18 months the group has developed and refined its plan, talking to residents compiling factual evidence. The plan sets out a vision for the future of the parish and policies which will be used to determine planning applications in the Neighbourhood Plan area. Regulations require these proposals to be consulted on before the plan can progress to Independent Examination.
Ward member and Leader of the council, Cllr Anthony Trollope-Bellew, said: “This is a tremendous achievement for the parish whose members have worked hard to reach this stage.
“I would particularly like to congratulate the Chairman of the parish council, Cllr Julian Spicer, for without his tenacity the plan would not have reached this stage
“Shaping your own area by developing a neighbourhood plan is a significant undertaking that is to be encouraged and congratulated.”
The consultation runs from Friday 18 November 2016 to Friday 13 January 2017. Responses must be made during this time to: the Planning Policy team, West Somerset Council, West Somerset House, Killick Way, Williton, Somerset TA4 4QA; via e-mail to email@example.com; or through the Council’s online consultation portal www.westsomersetsays.com where the consultation document can also be downloaded.
The consultation papers are also available to view on the website: www.westsomersetonline.gov.uk/neighbourhoodplanning or at the Council’s offices in Williton and Minehead and at Williton Library, and at Stogumber Central Stores and Post Office.
Following the consultation all representations received, along with the Stogumber Neighbourhood Development Plan documents, will be passed to an Independent Examiner. If successful the plan is subject to a local referendum. Plans approved by the public poll are adopted and would then form part of the development plan for West Somerset carrying real legal weight in planning decisions.
A neighbourhood plan must look at the use of land, whether for homes, shops, business or recreation - such as play areas - and can influence development and allocate sites. It cannot be used to restrict or prevent development.
Neighbourhood plans must conform to national and local planning policy – West Somerset Local Plan, site allocations and European Legislation such as equalities and ecology.
Further information on Neighbourhood Planning and the Stogumber Neighbourhood Area application can be found on the West Somerset Council website at: www.westsomersetonline.gov.uk/neighbourhoodplanning
The consultation documents will also be available on the Council’s consultation portal: www.westsomersetsays.com where online responses may also be submitted.
West Somerset Planning Policy Team – 01823 346484
Debbie Rundle, on behalf of West Somerset Council, 01823 356407 or 07795 246605 email firstname.lastname@example.org