What is a neighbourhood plan, and what is the relationship between the local plan and neighbourhood plans?

Neighbourhood planning was introduced through the Localism Act 2011 to help communities shape development in their areas. Neighbourhood plans may be prepared by a parish or town council, a neighbourhood forum or a community organisation. Neighbourhood plans become part of the development plan, once adopted (or ‘made’). A neighbourhood plan cannot block development that is already part of the local plan, but it can shape where that development will go and what it will look like.

Neighbourhood plans can also allocate sites for development and can protect important areas of local green space. Another important principle is that neighbourhood plans should be in ‘general conformity’ with ‘strategic’ policies as set out in the local plan for their area. Government guidance on neighbourhood planning can be found on the government website.

Neighbourhood Planning

Communities that prepare their own neighbourhood plan become entitled to an increased share of pooled funding from the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) to support their own local infrastructure projects.

A number of neighbourhood plans have been adopted in the area, and others are in the course of preparation or are proposed.

The following list sets out the current position:


Neighbourhood Plans have been adopted in the following areas:

  • Acle (2015)
  • Aylsham (2019) 
  • Blofield (2016)
  • Brundall (2016)
  • Drayton (2016)
  • Great and Little Plumstead (2015)
  • Hellesdon (2017)
  • Horsford (2018)
  • Old Catton (2016)
  • Rackheath (2017)
  • Salhouse (2017)
  • Sprowston (2014)
  • Strumpshaw (2014)
  • Wroxham (2019)

The following parishes are preparing a Neighbourhood Plan:

  • Buxton with Lamas
  • Guestwick
  • Horstead with Stanninghall
  • Reedham
  • Spixworth
  • Taverham
  • Thorpe St Andrew


In June 2018 Norwich City Council designated a neighbourhood area covering the Northern City Centre.

South Norfolk

Neighbourhood Plans have been adopted in the following areas:

  • Cringleford (2014)
  • Mulbarton (2016)
  • Easton (2017)

The following parishes are preparing a Neighbourhood Plan:

  • Dickleburgh and Rushall
  • Diss and District
  • Long Stratton
  • Poringland
  • Starston
  • Trowse with Newton