The Grovehill journey
The journey to creating a Grovehill Neighbourhood Plan began on 10 December 2011, when local residents and businesses came together at a launch event. Over 100 people visited Grovehill Community Centre that day to share their thoughts on how Grovehill should change over the next ten years.
Findings from the launch
The survey carried out during the launch day highlighted a number of positive aspects about living or working in Grovehill and a number of opportunities which would make the area even better.
- The strong sense of community and community spirit.
- A good location and bus routes.
- Lots of open space and easy access to the countryside.
- The range of shops and other services including the surgery, dentist and community café.
- Facilities around Henry Wells Square could be modernised and updated, including the car park and the area to the rear of the shops.
- There could be more small business units for local people.
- Ongoing maintenance and improvement would help, including litter picking, improved lighting and a facelift for the shops.
Design workshops – March 2012
Two design workshops were held in March 2012 with local residents and businesses.
Designating the Neighbourhood Area
In September 2012, the group submitted a letter to us to request a six-week public consultation that would allow us to officially acknowledge the Neighbourhood Plan area. The consultation ran from 1 October to 12 November 2012.
In December 2012, after considering the comments received during the consultation period, we accepted and officially acknowledged the Neighbourhood Area for Grovehill.
Grovehill Future designated neighbourhood area - decision notice (PDF 82KB)
Grovehill Future designated neighbourhood plan area - approved map (PDF 341KB)
The Neighbourhood Forum
The next step in creating the Grovehill Neighbourhood Plan was to create a Neighbourhood Forum. The group submitted an application to us in October 2013, and in February 2014 the application was granted.
Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Forum - decision notice (PDF 135KB)
To find out more, go to our Neighbourhood Forum page.
Vision and Themes
Grovehill Future Project vision and themes (PDF 3.1MB)
The Issues and Options
Between 22 September and 24 October 2014, the Grovehill Futures group consulted with local residents, businesses and community groups on its Issues and Options document, which outlined a series of ideas and objectives that will help form the Grovehill Neighbourhood Plan. The responses will be used in the next phase of the plan - a draft Neighbourhood Plan.
For more details, please see:
Issues and Options consultation (PDF 7MB)
Grovehill Futures - Issues and Options consultation results (PDF 1.1MB)
Regulation 14 consultation (24 Sept 2015 - 12 November 2015)
In September 2015, Grovehill Future Forum (as the statutory “Qualifying Body”) consulted on the first formal draft version of the Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Plan. Following on from this, the Forum reviewed all of the comments received during this and other non-statutory consultations, prior to submitting the Plan.
Submission of the Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Plan 2016-2031
On 13 March 2017, Grovehill Future Forum wrote to us to formally submit the Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Plan 2016-2031 and supporting documents, in accordance with Regulation 15 of the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012, as amended. The submission documents, or ‘plan proposal’, consist of:
- A map identifying the area to which the proposed neighbourhood development plan relates (bound within the Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Plan 2016-2031)
- The Consultation Statement
- The proposed neighbourhood development plan - Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Plan 2016-2031
- A statement (the Basic Conditions Statement) explaining how the proposed neighbourhood development plan meets the requirements of paragraph 8 of Schedule 4B to the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.
To comply with these statutory requirements, Grovehill Future Forum has submitted the following documents:
Neighbourhood Plan and supporting documents
Basic condition statement
On 26 April 2017, we wrote to the Forum to confirm that the plan proposal complies with all of the relevant statutory requirements. We formally acknowledged receipt of the submission to the relevant statutory consultees.
Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Plan - Compliance letter (PDF 138KB)
Regulation 16 consultation on draft submission of the Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Plan 2016-2031
Submission of the Neighbourhood Plan under Regulation 15 represents the stage where Grovehill Future Forum effectively hands over the baton for the neighbourhood development plan to us.
Under Regulation 16, we ran a statutory six-week consultation between 14 June and 28 July 2017 with reference to the 'basic conditions' that the Neighbourhood Plan needs to meet. These require that the plan:
- Has regard to national policy and guidance from the Secretary of State
- Contributes to sustainable development
- Is in general conformity with the strategic policy of the development plan for the area or any part of that area
- Doesn’t breach or is otherwise compatible with EU obligations – this includes the SEA Directive of 2001/42/EC, and that
- The making of the Neighbourhood Plan is not likely to have a significant effect on a European site (as defined in the Conservation of Habitats and Species regulations 2010(d)), either alone or in combination with other plans or projects.
Following the responses of the Regulation 16 consultation, the draft Grovehill Future Neighbourhood Plan, Basic Conditions and Consultation Statements that formed their formal submission (see above) were issued to the appointed Independant Examiner for his consideration.
Appointment of independent examiner
With the consent of Grovehill Future Forum, we appointed Mr Nigel McGurk to undertake the independent examination of the plan and prepare a report. Mr McGurk examined the plan by way of written representations, supported by an unaccompanied site visit of the plan area.
His report was formally submitted to us on 4 October 2017. It concludes that subject to making his recommended modifications, the Neighbourhood Plan meets the basic conditions set out in the legislation and should proceed to referendum. also recommends that the referendum area should be the same as the designated Neighbourhood Area.
We have approved the recommendations made by the examiner in the form of a Decision Statement (Regulation 18).
A date for a local referendum has now been agreed with the Forum for Thursday 15 February 2018. This will give Grovehill residents the opportunity to vote on whether they wish the Neighbourhood Plan to be used by us as a planning policy document.
Further details on the the referendum will follow in early 2018.