Legislation passed in 2011 enabled local authorities and parish councils to produce a Neighbourhood Plan (NP) which sets out how they would like to see their local areas develop. There are some constraints on what a NP can say and how closely it can be adhered to when approved, but it can reinforce efforts to make changes the community would like or to discourage proposals which the community might not like.  It can also give some strategic direction to help the Parish Council and others to argue for and implement longer term plans to help the community.

As an initial step towards creating a NP the whole parish of Great Denham was designated as a Neighbourhood Area in 2013.  The Parish Council carried out some consultations but the NP did not progress further at this stage because, whilst the Parish Council must lead the NP, there must be involvement from the wider community and the parish was at that stage still growing.

Recently (2017) we have once again been investigating creating a NP and invited a representative of Bedfordshire Rural Communities Charity to advise us.  During our discussions it became clear that, because all development in Great Denham is already planned and all remaining land belongs to either the Borough Council or the Wingfield Estate, that a NP may not be suitable.  A more appropriate plan for Great Denham might be a Green Infrastructure Plan in order to protect our green spaces for the future.  

We are following up this possibility and will keep you informed as to future proposals and plans.