Newstead given planning powers

NEWSTEAD villagers will be among the first in the country to take advantage of ‘radical’ new planning powers which will give them greater control over what goes where.

The village is part of a trial of the Government’s Neighbourhood Planning scheme allowing residents to decide the look and feel of their village - from the locations of shops, offices and schools to setting standards of design for new housing.

They can also chose which types of development get automatic planning permission.

The plans will get the go ahead once the Government’s Localism Bill becomes law, probably later this year.

Gedling Borough Council would have to adopt a neighbourhood plan if it was approved in a local referedum. It would have to be in keeping with the policy for growth of the wider area.

John Robinson, chief executive at Gedling Borough Council, said he was delighted Newstead had be chosen for the scheme,

“This will bring a much needed boost to the area and we hope it will act as a catalyst for further investment and support in future.

“There’s a long history of strong community involvement in the village, and we look forward to working with the whole community on this exciting project, building on the strong foundations laid in the latest Parish plan,” he said.

“It’s also a real opportunity for the Borough Council to be part of a major new initiative that could shape the future of planning across the country.”

Government decentralisation minister Greg Clark made the announcement about the scheme on Saturday.

He said: “Planning has increasingly become one of the most contentious issues in Britain, with communities becoming pitted against development.

“Often the reason is that local people feel alienated from the planning process, with no influence over changes to their area.

“Neighbourhood planning will help to reverse that position by giving communities the ability to shape development in their area rather than being dictated to.

“Localism and growth will go hand in hand. By giving local people a greater say together with new incentives to share in the benefits of growth, our reforms will help to create the conditions where communities begin to welcome development rather than resist it at all costs.” Newstead will benefit from a £20,000 grant for taking part.