Category Archives: Public Communication

Neighbourhood Plan – MADE

The result of the Referendum on December 2nd was a ringing endorsement of Parish Council’s determination to increase wellbeing and to preserve the character of the villages and the surrounding landscape. In case you missed it, 346 votes were cast; 316 in favour and just 29 against. 91% vote in favour and just 9% against, in a 15.8% turnout which is pretty good for a local issue election.

The steering group would like to thank:

The Parish Council for supporting the development of the Plan from its inception in 2017 through to its conclusion; and the three clerks who have attended our formal meetings, taken minutes and undertaken tasks on our behalf, especially Alison Benson;

SNC/WNC for their support, contribution and commitment from day one, especially Alan Munn and, earlier, Ellie Gingell;

Kirkwells Consultants, especially Michael Wellock, for providing the framework for the finished Plan, for his constructive contribution and for his patience and endurance throughout;

Locality for the grant we received and for helping us with the Sites and Housing Needs Assessments;

Those who have assisted with publicity: The Village Hall, Carey Chapel, Hackleton Stores, The White Hart, The Spread Eagle, and especially Alan McDonogh  for help with design and printing posters, drafts of the Plan and other materials;

Members of the parish community who had any input into the process, gave us moral support and who attended the open sessions.

It was a long, challenging process during which we learned a considerable amount about the area in which we live. Through the Plan, we hope to share that knowledge and experience with you.

The Plan is not about how many houses will be built; it is about the quality and the appropriateness of any future developments. Importantly, it is about the whole environment, including biodiversity, wildlife, history and archaeology. People who have read the Plan tell us what an interesting and informative read it is, with lots of maps, diagrams and photographs to illustrate the content. It’s not as daunting as its length might suggest – and it has more pictures than War And Peace!

The journey starts here, in terms of our greater involvement with WNC on Planning. Our policies sit alongside those in the WNC Local Plan and we will have a greater say in our own future.

The Steering Group:

Roy Hawkesford (chair)

Jo Willmer

Carol Lloyd

Maz Woolley

The Neighbourhood Plan is made!

A referendum was held on 2nd December 2021 to decide if the Neighbourhood Plan for Hackleton Parish was to be used as part of the formal planning process by West Northamptonshire.

The results of the referendum were as follows:

316 voted yes (91%)

29 voted no (9%)

This now means that the neighbourhood plan will be used as well as the local plan and regional ones by Planners and Councillors when deciding upon planning applications in this area.

This plan covers the period up until 2029 when a new plan will be needed.

WNC Confirm Referendum on Hackleton Parish Neighbourhood Plan

At a Cabinet Meeting last Tuesday, 12th October 2021, West Northants Council (WNC) confirmed that a referendum on the Hackleton Parish Neighbourhood Plan will take place.

All those on the Electoral Register for the area will be sent full details by West Northants Council by post, but key details confirmed by WNC Electoral staff are:

  • Voting will take place on Thursday December 2nd 2021
  • There will be a single polling station which will be at Dudley Winterbottom Memorial Hall, Chapel Lane, Hackleton, NN7 2AH
  • This polling station will be open from 7AM until 10PM

More Information

  • If you are not yet registered as a voter but wish to vote you need to register with WNC by 16/11/2021
  • If you wish to apply for a postal vote the deadline is 17/11/2021
  • If you wish to apply for a proxy vote the deadline is 24/11/2021

The referendum will ask you if you wish the Hackleton Parish Neighbourhood Plan to be used to help decide planning applications within the Parish.

West Northants Council will provide details of where copies of the plan will be available for inspection and will also have all the documents which need to be made available by law on their website. We will add links to the documentation on the Council’s site here on when it is available.

The Examination is finished – Just waiting for the results!

The Examiner has now submitted his completed examination to West Northamptonshire Council (WNC). He has made a considerable number of recommendations for changes to be made to the plan submitted to him to ensure that it is consistent with national planning policy, and the higher level plans it must conform to like the Local Plan and West Northants Strategic plans. The Examiner has also made a number of constructive suggestions that will make the plan clearer and better suited to be used for planning purposes.

Once appropriate WNC will be posting the Examiner’s report on their planning portal and when we know that the documentation is there we will provide links from this website.

We now need to work with our Consultant to get the plan amended as recommended by the Examiner, and passed to WNC Planning Team. The WNC Planning Committee will then need to consider the final amended plan, the examiner’s recommendations, and the recommendations of their own Planners. Should they decide that all is in order they will allow their staff to organise a referendum within the Parish to decide if local residents are happy for the plan to be put in place.

Once we know when the referendum will take place we will be looking to offer opportunities to inspect the plan and ask any questions that they may have.

The Examination begins Now!

We’ve done all our work and now it is the turn of an independent examiner to review our Neighbourhood plan and make sure that it meets a number of criteria set by the Government in Town and Country Planning legislation.

West Northamptonshire (South) Planning Team have sent our plan and all the supporting information about consultations to the recently appointed independent examiner who will now spend some weeks undertaking an examination which will include a detailed examination of our plan, questioning the neighbourhood planning team where clarification is needed, examining our communications to date and any representations, and even visiting the parish where required to get a fuller picture of the impact of the plan.

Once the independent examiner has completed the review they will issue a report to West Northamptonshire (South) Planning Team who will then publish it. If the local planning authority is satisfied that the report complies with planning considerations then West Northamptonshire Planning will send the plan to a referendum within the Parish.

We will share the progress of the examination on this website as we are updated.

Regulation 16 Consultation Complete

South Northants Council (SNC) has now completed the consultations on the Hackleton Parish Neighbourhood Plan that they are obliged to do under Regulation 16 of the relevant planning legislation. If you wish to see the responses that were received please follow the following link

There you may find the version of the plan we submitted to SNC and the comments that they received.

The next step is for a suitable approved Planning Inspector to be engaged to carry out the next step of the plan approval process which is an examination of the plan, the representations made, and the process followed. The Inspector has to ensure that the plan is fully compliant with the Government’s National Planning Framework and that the policies and justifications are all appropriate and consistent.

This examination may take a few weeks as it is not a trivial task.

Once the examination is complete the Inspector will issue a report which may require changes to be made to the Plan which would need to be made before the plan becomes a final version. The final version will then be made available and SNC/WNC will arrange a referendum where residents in the Parish will get the opportunity to say Yes or No to the plan. If a simple majority of voters say Yes then the plan is ‘made’ and will apply to all planning applications made within the Parish from that point onwards with WNC obliged to take note of the provisions of the plan when making decisions on any planning applications within the parish.

The team hopes that we can publicise the final plan once the examination is over and before the referendum but with Covid restrictions still in place we may not be able to do this in person and may need to be creative about our approach to this.

What happens after the Regulation 16 Consultation Ends?

Roy Hawkesford, the Chair of our Hackleton Parish Neighbourhood Plan Team, met virtually with Alan Munn of SNC on March 18th. SNC are still collecting representations and will continue to do so until the end of the official regulation 16 consultation period late in March. The SNC planning team will remain responsible for the plan although they will be operating under the new West Northamptonshire Authority name from April 8th.

Once R16 consultation ends the SNC/WNC Planning team will advertise for a qualified Planning Examiner. Our Neighbourhood Plan team will be consulted during the choice of Examiner and SNC/WNC will then appoint the Examiner. The Examination is expected to take about two weeks and the Examiner will consider our plan and representations made in the consultation. The Examiner will decide if there are any amendments needed to the plan to conform to Government planning policy and meet legitimate representations. If there are we may need to work with SNC/WNC Planning to make amendments to meet the Examiners requirements.

Once the final approved version of the plan exists SNC/WNC will organise a referendum within Hackleton Parish and parishioners will have the chance to vote for or against the plan. The Neighbourhood Plan team hope that will be able to put on an exhibition for residents to set out the plan and give people an opportunity to ask questions before they vote. However, that will be subject to the date of the Referendum and what Covid related restrictions apply at the time. In any event we hope to use the Parish Magazine and this web site to keep people informed before the referendum.

RegulatioN 16 Consultation under way

South Northants Council (SNC) has begun their consultation on the Hackleton Parish Neighbourhood Plan. You will find the area dedicated to this consultation on the SNC website at

All responses must be made to SNC following the procedures set out there.

Posters issued by SNC giving advice on the consultation exercise may be found in the Parish Notice Boards as shown in the photographs below.

The consultation exercise ends on 26th March 2021.

Regulation 16 Consultation

The SNC led Regulation 16 consultation phase on the Hackleton Parish Neighbourhood Plan opens on February 10th 2021 and lasts until March 26th 2021. This consultation is web and email based and the SNC poster below shows the contact details which will be in force from February 10th. Please note that all comments should be made as to SNC as shown on the poster below following the procedures set by SNC. The poster shown below will be posted up around the parish shortly.

Following this SNC will arrange for a Government approved Planning Inspector to review the plan to confirm that it conforms with the law and the Government’s National Planning Framework after which they will organise a referendum in the parish to approve the plan.

Regulation 16 Plan version now being reviewed

Our Consultant has now returned the latest version of the plan updated and expanded after our Regulation 14 consultation.

The team are now spending time reviewing the plan and trying to make sure that it reflects changes which have happened since the R14 version was written like the start of work at Hardingstone on new housing. We are also trying to make sure that it is very clear before it is passed to SNC for the official comments.

In addition to the plan there are two more documents that have to be submitted to accompany it. These are written by the Consultant and are technical planning documents but we we still have to check that they are correct!

We are still waiting for some supporting policy maps to check but these are likely to be with us soon.

We hope to get the review completed, and the paperwork updated by our Consultant as soon as possible, with an aim of getting it to SNC before the end of 2020.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from the Neighbourhood Plan Team