Neighbourhood planning gives communities direct power to develop a shared vision for their neighbourhood and shape the development and growth of their local area. They are able to choose where they want new homes, shops and offices to be built, have their say on what those new buildings should look like and what infrastructure should be provided, and grant planning permission for the new buildings they want to see go ahead. Neighbourhood planning provides a powerful set of tools for local people to plan for the types of development to meet their community’s needs and where the ambition of the neighbourhood is aligned with the strategic needs and priorities of the wider local area.

Chartham Parish Council voted at its meeting, held on 09 July 2019, to produce a neighbourhood plan subject to establishing parishioner support for a plan and being able to secure additional funding to cover the likely large costs associated with producing a plan. A public meeting was subsequently held on 14 September 2019 and in total 121 votes were cast (included those via email in the lead up to the meeting), of which 114 were in favour and 07 against. The Parish Council was informed of the public vote at its meeting on 08 October 2019 and agreement was given to go ahead with the production of a neighbourhood plan.

Who is preparing the plan?

The Parish Council has authorised the formation of a Steering Group to prepare the neighbourhood plan. The steering group is formed of local residents and Parish Councillors who have volunteered to assist with the preparation of the plan. If you would like to know more and/or may be interested in joining the Steering Group please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

In preparing the plan, the Steering Group are being supported by Squires Planning, a town planning consultancy with considerable experience in the preparation of neighbourhood plan. 

The latest Steering Group meeting minutes can be downloaded below:

All Steering Group minutes can be found in our Document Repository.  


To understand where we are in the plan making process, please visit our timeline.

Legislation & Guidance

Neighbourhood planning was introduced to the UK planning system by the Localism Act 2011. Guidance from central government which explains the neighbourhood planning system (including key stages, considerations, legislation, etc.) can be found at Current national planning policy can be found in the National Planning Policy Framework.

Most importantly, a neighbourhood Plan must meet each of a the basic conditions before it can be put to a referendum and be 'made' ('made' in this context means come into force). The basic conditions are set out in paragraph 8(2) of Schedule 4B to the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 as applied to neighbourhood plans by section 38A of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004. The basic conditions are:

  1. having regard to national policies and advice contained in guidance issued by the Secretary of State it is appropriate to make the order (or neighbourhood plan). Read more details.
  2. having special regard to the desirability of preserving any listed building or its setting or any features of special architectural or historic interest that it possesses, it is appropriate to make the order. This applies only to Orders. Read more details.
  3. having special regard to the desirability of preserving or enhancing the character or appearance of any conservation area, it is appropriate to make the order. This applies only to Orders. Read more details.
  4. the making of the order (or neighbourhood plan) contributes to the achievement of sustainable development. Read more details.
  5. the making of the order (or neighbourhood plan) is in general conformity with the strategic policies contained in the development plan for the area of the authority (or any part of that area). Read more details.
  6. the making of the order (or neighbourhood plan) does not breach, and is otherwise compatible with, EU obligations. Read more details.
  7. prescribed conditions are met in relation to the Order (or plan) and prescribed matters have been complied with in connection with the proposal for the order (or neighbourhood plan). Read more details.