Image demonstrating Wooler Neighbourhood Plan is officially 'made' 

Wooler Neighbourhood Plan is officially 'made' 

 Residents of Wooler now have more of a say over future development in their parish, following the adoption of a neighbourhood plan for their area. 
The Wooler Neighbourhood Plan will now form part of the statutory development plan for Northumberland, meaning that future planning decisions in the parish will be made in line with policies in them, unless ‘material’ considerations indicate otherwise.  
The Plan passed independent examination in May 2020 and was officially adopted, or ‘made’, at a meeting of Northumberland County Council’s cabinet. It will now form a key part of the planning process for this area. 
The Plan was prepared by Wooler Parish Council who were supported throughout the process by the County Council’s Neighbourhood Planning Team. 
It focusses on a range of planning issues identified by the local community. These include: housing, the local economy, landscape and the natural environment, townscape and heritage, community life, sustainable development and accessibility. 
A local referendum held in Wooler parish in June 2021 returned a majority vote in favour of using the Plan to make decisions on planning applications. 
The Parish crosses the administrative boundaries of Northumberland County Council and the Northumberland National Park Authority. The National Park Authority have also agreed to bring it into force. 
Councillor Colin Horncastle, cabinet member for community services at Northumberland County Council, said: "This neighbourhood plan is testament to the hard work of many dedicated people in this community, and I am very pleased to see it come into effect. It is a positive plan which supports the development the local community has said it would like to see happen in the Parish.” 
Work is under way on the preparation of neighbourhood plans in over 20 other parishes across Northumberland, while 17 neighbourhood plans are already in place. The Neighbourhood Planning Team continues to provide dedicated help and practical support to all the local parish councils involved in neighbourhood planning. 
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