Totnes Neighbourhood Plan Referendum Result- 16th November 2023
On Thursday 16th November 2023 a referendum was held on whether to adopt the Totnes Neighbourhood Plan. The result was an overwhelming ‘yes’ vote (91.55 percent of votes cast compared to 8.45 percent voting ‘no’) by the Totnes electorate of who just over 17 percent came out to vote.
This ‘yes’ vote means that the plan will be adopted and South Hams District Council, as the planning authority, will use the Totnes Neighbourhood Plan to help it to decide planning applications within Totnes. It will also be used by the Town Council’s Planning Committee when making comments on planning applications.
South Hams District Council is required to adopt the Neighbourhood Plan within 8 weeks. Once ‘made’ (adopted) by the local planning authority, the Neighbourhood Plan becomes part of the Development Plan for the plan area. In practical terms this means that decisions on planning applications in the town will be made using both the Joint Local Plan and the Totnes Neighbourhood Plan, and any other material considerations.
By way of background, the Neighbourhood Plan has been put together over many years by town councillors and a wide variety of public working groups and public consultation events to make sure it encompasses the aspirations and hopes of all the community. It aims to protect and nurture the town’s precious heritage whilst adapting to the needs of a changing world, particularly recognising the ‘climate emergency’ and the way we act to protect Totnes for future generations. The plan contains policy based on the themes of environment, economy and community which is what the planning authority will use to assess planning applications against. Its vision for Totnes is that:
a. As Totnes changes and develops over the coming decades its identity must not be lost;
b. It will continue to be a model of sustainability, innovation, inclusivity and creativity;
c. It will become an even better place for residents of all ages, visitors and businesses.
Information on previous consultations, discussions and earlier documents can be found further down this page.
If you are pushed for time, the document below has extracted the vision and objectives of the Neighbourhood Plan, plus the detail of the proposed policies. We understand that the language used is not always easy, but to be compliant with planning requirements sentences have had to be worded in a very precise way to pass the examination.
Neighbourhood Plan Update July 2023
The Examiner’ Report of the Totnes Neighbourhood Development Plan has been received and has found that the plan meets the basic conditions subject to some modifications. Following a decision by Full Council on 5th June to accept these modifications and amend the plan accordingly, the Council wrote to South Hams District Council on 17th July requesting that they take the next steps towards a referendum on the Plan. The letter can be viewed below.
Neighbourhood Plan Hearing – 6th September 2022 at 10.30am
The independent examiner of the Totnes Neighbourhood Development Plan, having read the plan, supporting documents and representations, considered it is necessary to call a Hearing focussing on Policy C12 Former Dairy Quest Site and Appendix E, Former – Dairy Crest site Development Brief. The Hearing took place on 6th September 2022 and was open to the public to observe, with representatives identified by the examiner invited to speak. As a result of the hearing there have been updates to the Neighbourhood Plan (to include Policy C12), the Basic Conditions Statement and the Consultation Statement, all of which can be found below.
A recording of the hearing can be found at https://us06web.zoom.us/rec/share/39E875qwoxcycLMJiWHpxfP4WO0ZSu_zoH3JiyFDe5DzdHEnMt1xJBZAlWPIVCIO.12xcmu4BqASrIerJ?startTime=1662456388000
For more information see a note of discussions held at the hearing and the Notice of Public Hearing document below.
October 2021 Totnes Neighbourhood Plan – Consultation on a New Policy: C12 – Former Dairy Crest Site
On 4th October Totnes Town Council resolved to pause the Neighbourhood Plan examination process to consult on a proposed new policy about the former Dairy Crest site. The consultation ran from 18th October until 28th November 2021 for comments on this policy only. The documents are below (and the draft plan and supporting documents can be found lower down on this page).
Totnes Neighbourhood Plan – Regulation 16 Consultation
Totnes Town Council has submitted the plan proposal to South Hams District Council for the designated Neighbourhood Development Plan Area, in accordance with the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 (as amended).
South Hams District Council is consulting residents and other interested stakeholders on the plan proposal for the Totnes Parish Neighbourhood Development Plan Area.
Consultation ran for 8 weeks between Monday 28th June 2021 and Sunday 22nd August 2021. Please see the attached public notice for details.
To view the full plan proposal please visit: www.neighbourhoodplanning.swdevon.gov.uk/totnes or https://www.totnestowncouncil.gov.uk/your-community/neighbourhood-plan/
At Full Council on Monday 7th September 2020, Council agreed to submit the draft Totnes Neighbourhood Plan to South Hams District Council (as the local authority) at Regulation 15 which is the next formal stage in taking the Neighbourhood Plan forward and towards independent examination. South Hams will review the documents and run a public consultation. More information will be posted when available.
Totnes Neighbourhood Plan Documents submitted at Regulation 15
Community Based Evidence Documents referenced in Regulation 15 evidence base document:
In response to the Localism Act introduced in 2011 Totnes Town Council is working towards developing a Neighbourhood Plan for Totnes.
The Terms of Reference for the Neighbourhood Planning Task and Finish Group can be found below.