Latest Draft Plan – after Independent Examination

Village Workshop

The Neighbourhood Development Plan is now at a critical phase.  At workshops you told the NDP team how you wanted the parish to develop over the next fifteen years.  You came along to drop-in sessions and village meetings, and you wrote into the Parish Magazine and the NDP inbox.  You read and and responded to our first Rough Draft, and the two formal consultations processes (known as Regulation 14 and Regulation 16).  We’ve been through formal ‘examination’ of the NDP by an Independent Examiner and a Public Hearing, and we’ve made all the amendments that the Examiner required.  So what are we waiting for now?

Our latest Draft – updated

Our NDP now incorporates the recommendations of the Independent Examiner, and it has been submitted to TWBC.  Click here Post Examination Final Draft for the final draft.

It is daunting at over 100 pages, but with specific chapters on Landscape and the Green Environment, Housing Supply and Site Allocation, Design and the Built Environment, Business and the Local Economy, and Transport and Infrastructure that you can dip into.  It sets our our vision for the parish, and how we want it to be protected as we grow.

Finally, the referendum?

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council, as the Local Planning Authority, are now taking our Plan through the relevant Committees for review and sign-off.  This should take until just after the new year.  Early in 2022 they should be ready to start the process for our referendum.  We don’t yet have a firm date, but the question will be very simple:

Do you want Tunbridge Wells Borough Council to use the neighbourhood plan for Benenden to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?

If a simple majority of voters agree, then shortly afterwards TWBC will formally make our NDP part of the statutory development plan, so it becomes a legally binding part of the planning rules for Benenden.