First Annual Report for Sevenoaks Town Council’s Neighbourhood Plan accompanied by Exciting News!

Published: 21 May 2024

Exciting News;
Sevenoaks Town Council has been shortlisted for the South East Region Awards for Planning Excellence for its Neighbourhood Plan, by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI). These awards showcase and celebrate the best plans, people and projects and the contribution they make via the planning profession to local communities, and the Town Council is delighted to be recognised amongst other admirable teams and authorities.

The Sevenoaks Town Neighbourhood Plan is based upon a vision statement and accompanying set of objectives. An important focus for the plan is to improve the health and well-being of the people that live within the Sevenoaks Town, recognising the importance of addressing the nationally declared climate emergency and drawing upon the Town’s existing strengths and heritage.

It was created with strong involvement from local groups and organisations as well as input from the local community, reflecting their vision and hopes for the future of the Town.

The results of the Town Council’s entry into the RTPI’s Awards for Planning Excellence South East will be announced after 4th July 2024, with further information as to the Awards event and other nominees and categories available via this link.

Hannah Gooden, Sevenoaks District Council’s Planning Policy Team Leader, who worked closely with the Town Council to support the Plan’s preparation and ensure its conformity with existing and emerging planning policy, said:

“We were pleased to be able to support Sevenoaks Town Council to develop a robust and engaging Neighbourhood Plan. Both Councils worked closely together to ensure we produced an evidence-led plan, based on extensive community engagement. It provides a firm basis for the future development of the town, with helpful development guidance for key sites, including Sevenoaks Quarry, a Green Belt site, which has since been granted planning permission. The Neighbourhood Plan examiner noted that the Plan ‘…will secure the realisation of the Town Council’s Vision and that Sevenoaks will retain its attractive characteristics while at the same time ensuring that a sustainable future is achieved’. We fully concur with this view and were pleased that the Plan received a good level of support at the referendum and is now being used to help shape development in the town.”

First Annual Report
The first Annual Report of the Sevenoaks Town Neighbourhood Plan was agreed at last night’s Planning & Environment Committee meeting and is now available to view online.

The Annual Report sets out how it has been used throughout its first year of its adoption, measuring the progress of each of its objectives and reporting on various projects which are known to be actively pursuing some of its initiatives, as well as monitoring how successfully the Plan is being applied to planning permissions for local development.

The overarching purpose is to ensure that the STNP is an effective and productive document, actively delivering the vision which the Sevenoaks Town residents helped to create and voted on at its successful Referendum in May 2023. Regular monitoring via Annual Reports will help to ensure that this is achieved.

For more information on the Sevenoaks Town Neighbourhood Plan, please visit its dedicated webpage. Updates on how the Plan is being implemented – including via projects which it identifies for further progression – are available via the STNP Monitoring and Implementation Group - Sevenoaks Town Council which meets every 8 weeks. Meetings are open to the public and membership remains open to any person, organisation or group who wishes to be involved in this or to engage with a particular topic covered by the Plan.

If you have any queries, please contact:
Georgie Elliston