History of RCP Neighbourhood Plan

A Neighbourhood Plan is a local development plan for a specific place (in our case, the Parish). It is drawn up by a community working with the local planning authority (in our case, East Hants District Council and South Downs National Park Authority) and is approved by an independent inspector before going to a community referendum. Once approved, the Neighbourhood Plan will be a statutory, legal document that seeks to influence future planning decisions within the Parish until 2033.

The vision for the Neighbourhood Plan is to conserve and enhance the Parish of Rowlands Castle as an attractive community whilst maintaining its separate identity, character and distinctiveness.

Go Ahead for Neighbourhood Plan

At an Extraordinary Meeting of the Council on 23 March 2017, it was resolved to develop a Parish Neighbourhood Plan. This decision was taken in light of the overwhelming support for such a Plan from those who had responded to the Council’s six-week Consultation on the subject. At a subsequent Public Meeting on 15 May 2017, a Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group (NPSG) was formed, including the appointment of members and the election of a Chairman. Gill Whatley, Council’s Administrative Assistant, also agreed to act as Administration Co-ordinator for the Group. The Group can be contacted on projects@rowlandscastlepc.org.uk or via the Parish Office – see Contact for more details.

Progress of Neighbourhood Plan

In October 2018 all households within the Parish received a copy of the NPSG’s Survey about future housing and other needs within the Parish of Rowlands Castle. The NPSG was very pleased with the number of surveys which were returned completed. The exercise gave everyone an opportunity to engage with the Neighbourhood Plan with the aim of helping to ensure the Parish continues to be a place where we all love to live.

Early in 2020 the NPSG engaged John Slater Planning to advise on the draft Plan and as part of its recommendations, a Settlement Character Assessment was produced by Terra Firma Consultancy in September 2020, as referred to in the Autumn 2020 edition of the Village & Valley magazine.  This detailed report describes the key characteristics of the main built areas within the Parish, and includes future Development Considerations and recommended Management Objectives for preserving and enhancing the character of these areas.  A PDF copy of this document is available to view on the Neighbourhood Plan page.

In June 2021, as part of the ongoing development of the Neighbourhood Plan, the NPSG invited all residents of the Parish to participate in a short online survey (via SurveyMonkey) as part of the consultation process.  The survey covered what they value, wish to conserve, and might wish to see developed in the Parish in the future. It included questions for residents, questions for younger people (below age 18), and questions for businesses in the Parish.

It is worth noting that the Plan can only deal with “Land Use” and not Highways or Traffic, but where there are matters outside of the parameters of the Plan, these will, so far as is practicable and possible, still be registered as having been raised.

For copies of the Reports made by the NPSG Chairs to the Parish Council at regular intervals throughout the development of the Plan, please see the Neighbourhood Plan page.

Further information is also available via the following links:
Current Terms of Reference for NPSG
Notes of Public Meeting on 15.05.17
Confirmed Minutes of Extraordinary Council Mtg on 23.03.17
Results from Consultation on Potential Parish Neighbourhood Plan
Display Boards for NP Exhibition in February 2017
RCPC Chairman’s Welcoming Address to NP Exhibition in February 2017
Leaflet on Potential for RC Parish Neighbourhood Plan December 2016

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