Ashton Neighbourhood Plan

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan Adoption

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan was 'made' adopted by Full Council on 20 May 2021. This document now forms part of the statutory Development Plan for the district.

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan Referendum

A referendum will be held on Thursday 6 May 2021 to decide the question below:

‘Do you want West Northamptonshire Council to use the Neighbourhood Plan for Ashton to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?’

For more information see:

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan designation

We previously received an application for the designation of a Neighbourhood Plan from Ashton Parish Council in April 2015. This is required by the Neighbourhood Plan regulations as the first step of the Neighbourhood Plan process.

We confirmed the designation of Ashton as a Neighbourhood Plan area in November 2015.

View Ashton Neighbourhood Plan designation documents

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan first draft

Ashton’s Draft Regulation 14 consultation - 11 February to 27 March 2019. Any comments should be submitted via the response form on the Ashton Parish Council website

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan First Draft documents

Ashton Neighbourhood Submission Draft Plan

Ashton Parish Council submitted their Neighbourhood Development Plan to South Northamptonshire Council in August 2019. This was deemed to be in accordance with Regulation 15 of the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 (as amended) and in accordance with the following Regulation 16 the Council publicised the plan between 26 August 2019 and Friday 4 October 2019. All comments made during the publicity period were forwarded to the Independent Examiner.

The Submission Documents and Response to the publicity period can be viewed below.

Ashton Neighbourhood Submission Draft Plan

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan Examination

South Northamptonshire Council and Ashton Parish Council agreed the appointment of Ann Skippers to undertake the Examination of the Ashton Neighbourhood Development Plan. The Examination commenced in April 2020. Correspondence from the Examiner can be viewed below.

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan Examination

As a consequence of this correspondence a further period of publicity of the Ashton Neighbourhood Plan under Regulation 16 of the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 (as amended) took place between 1 June 2020 and finished at 12 noon Friday 17 July 2020.

Representations received regarding the plan were forwarded onto the Examiner, who considered them whilst assessing the Neighbourhood Plan and supporting documents against the ‘Basic Conditions’. Representations will be made public however personal details will be removed.

We have now received the report of the Examiner and will consider the recommendations that it makes before the Plan is progressed.

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan Referendum

The report of the Examiner of the Ashton Neighbourhood Plan was received 20 November 2020. This concluded that the Ashton Neighbourhood Development Plan, subject to the modifications, meets the basic conditions and the other statutory requirements set out in legislation and can proceed to a referendum.

As part of their Examination the Examiner was also required to consider whether the referendum area should be extended beyond the Neighbourhood Plan area. They concluded that there was no reason to alter or extend the Plan area for the purpose of holding a referendum and no representations have been made that would lead them to reach a different conclusion.

Therefore they concluded that the Ashton Neighbourhood Development Plan should proceed to a referendum based on the Ashton Neighbourhood Plan area as approved by South Northamptonshire Council on 18 November 2015.

The Examiners report and the Ashton Neighbourhood Plan, including Modifications, were considered at a meeting of South Northamptonshire Council’s Planning Policy and Regeneration Strategy Committee on 20 January 2021 where the Examiners report and modifications were accepted and it was resolved that the modified Plan should proceed to Referendum.

Whilst it is usual that the Neighbourhood Plan would proceed to community referendum following the Examination and endorsement of the Council it should be noted that in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that the Government has advised that all neighbourhood planning referendums that would have been scheduled to take place, between 16 March 2020 and 5 May 2021 are postponed in line with the Local Government and Police and Crime Commissioner (Coronavirus) (Postponement of Elections and Referendums) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020 until 6 May 2021.

They continue in the Planning Practice Guidance (Paragraph: 107 Reference ID: 41- 107-20200925) to state that at this current time where a local planning authority has issued a decision statement (as set out under Regulation 18 of the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012) detailing its intention to send a neighbourhood plan to referendum, that plan can be given significant weight in decision-making, so far as the plan is material to the application.

As such and following the decision of the committee and the publication of a Decision Statement significant weight can now be assigned to the Ashton Neighbourhood Plan.

Ashton Neighbourhood Plan and Decision Statement