About neighbourhood plans

Under the Localism Act 2011 communities can now choose to prepare a neighbourhood plan setting out a vision for their local area and general planning policies to guide development in their neighbourhood.

Neighbourhood plans are not compulsory but in areas where they are prepared they will sit alongside the borough-wide local plan and be used in the determination of planning applications. Neighbourhood plans must be in general conformity with the strategic policies of the local plan, adding to them in terms of detail.

Neighbourhood plans are prepared by local people rather than the council. However the council has a statutory role to provide support and to make formal decisions at various stages in the process. Further information is available on the Planning Portal.

What neighbourhood plans do

Neighbourhood plans:

  • identify a vision for the area and set objectives for the next 5 to 20 years
  • provide detailed planning policies. Setting out for example, where new development should be located and how it should be designed
  • allocate sites for different types of development such as housing, retail and office space and designate areas of community greenspace
  • identify key areas for improvement and set out proposals for them
  • will be subject to consultation, examination and a referendum, and once adopted form a part of the statutory development plan for Stockport

An adopted neighbourhood plan carries significant weight in determining development proposals for the local area. As a result, there are a number of legal requirements that the plan must meet.

A neighbourhood plan must:

  • have appropriate regard to national planning policy
  • contribute to the achievement of sustainable development
  • be compatible with environmental obligations, as incorporated in UK law
  • be compatible with human rights requirements
  • have signed agreements (PDF 228Kb) between the council and the respective neighbourhood forum

Find further guidance on neighbourhood plans

Get in touch

Any groups wishing to develop a proposal should contact us by emailing planning.policy@stockport.gov.uk