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Cheshire East

Neighbourhood Planning in CE

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Neighbourhood plans are going from strength to strength in Cheshire East — with three more recently completed and endorsed by the council.

Councillor Ainsley Arnold, council cabinet member for housing, planning and regeneration, has confirmed the Stapeley, Somerford, Hulme Walfield and Somerford Booths neighbourhood plans following successful referenda. He additionally confirmed that the Bollington Neighbourhood Plan will proceed to a referendum in May.

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Disley and Handforth neighbourhood plans are also making good progress and are expected to complete shortly. This will take the total number of completed plans in the borough to 17 — and means that Cheshire East remains in the top five most active authorities for neighbourhood planning in the country.

But that's not the whole story — many local communities are busy making neighbourhood plans across the borough: Congleton, Poynton, Wilmslow, Knutsford and Calveley have completed their draft plans. Middlewich, Wrenbury, Moston and Newhall are close to publicising draft plans and there are a further 25 communities in the borough working at earlier stages of the process.

Neighbourhood plans, developed by parish and town councils, contain a number of policies specifically designed to shape local development and safeguard the long-term development of each locality. They can, for example, help delivery of local employment and protection of wildlife and green spaces around their communities, as well as bolster good design and meet the housing needs of local residents.

Sean Hannaby, Cheshire East Council's director of planning and environment, said: "This is fantastic news for plan making in Cheshire East and confirms that our residents have the appetite to help themselves to plan for the future. We've been firmly supporting neighbourhood planning for a number of years now.

"Sound and robust neighbourhood plans allow communities to take greater ownership of planning policy, which directly impacts on their lives. They enable local people to develop policies to address those planning matters that affect not only their interests but also wellbeing.

"Working together across our Local Plan and neighbourhood plans helps us create a development framework, which puts communities at the heart of the planning process. I'm especially pleased to see our first land allocations coming forward through neighbourhood plans at Calveley, Poynton, High Legh and Wrenbury. These give us certainty about what housing will go forward and where it will be, all led by residents.

"With the government's recent confirmation of funding and policy support for neighbourhood planning, we're looking forward to supporting neighbourhood planners across Cheshire East."

Cheshire East Council adopted its new Local Plan Strategy last July and is now working on the detailed aspects of this in a part-two document, to be launched later this year.

While work progresses on this, the council continues to be enthusiastic supporters of plan making in communities across the borough and has recently improved its resources and advice to help deliver neighbourhood plans more quickly.

For more information about neighbourhood plans, visit the council's website at: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/planning/neighbourhood-plans/neighbourhood-planning.aspx

Alternatively, contact our neighbourhood planning team directly by email at: neighbourhoods@cheshireeast.gov.uk

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