Developing the Plan

Latest Update

Semington’s Neighbourhood Plan has now completed the stage of formal consultation (known as Regulation 14 – Pre-submission) and is now being revised for submission to Wiltshire Council.  This will take place in mid-July.  When submitted you’ll be able to use the drop-down menu to read the plan and its evidence base.

Background to a Neighbourhood Plan for Semington

In 2021, Semington parish council decided, following an initial village consultation, to use the 2011 Localism Act to work with Wiltshire Council to create a neighbourhood development plan. The parish council decided to do this as it would allow the village to make clear the sort of changes that it would like to see over the next few years; and because the process of doing so would itself bring benefits to the village. Such plans give local people and communities more say about the scale and nature of future development where they live. It is the parish council’s intention that the neighbourhood development plan will become the starting point for deciding where and if development should take place, together with the type and quality of that development. In doing this it is setting out to protect the parish from uncontrolled or poorly placed development, and ensure that any development is sympathetic to and improves the look and feel of the parish. This approach fits within both the national strategic planning policy and within Wiltshire’s core strategy. At this time, the plan is still being developed.

When completed, the Semington neighbourhood development plan will relate to the whole of the parish and touch on a wide range of issues of local importance. These include community facilities, green space and infrastructure, housing, employment, our unique built heritage, highways, and the protection of biodiversity and habitats. All this reflects community-wide comments, observations and concerns about our future, bringing them together with census information, strategic and statistical evidence that represents the community’s overwhelming desire to make Semington parish an even better place to live and work, both now and for future generations.

The parish council, although an important part of the development of a neighbourhood plan, cannot do it on its own as the process has to be a partnership with villagers. After a call for volunteers, an 8-member steering group was set up which was broadly representative of the community. This group meets monthly, reporting to parish council meetings. The steering group is working with consultants Place Studio, with a wider group of critical friends from the parish, and with villagers through a range of formal and informal community consultations.

It took some time for the parish council to be convinced of the need for Semington to create a neighbourhood development plan, but since we took that decision in 2021, the Council has been fully supportive of it, and thinks that the completed plan will be a document that the Council will be able to use to make decisions that parishioners can rely on as it represents a broad consensus of local opinion about Semington’s future. A brief history of how the parish council considered whether to develop a plan can be found here