Rory Highlights Engagement Process into Cumbria’s First Council-Sanctioned Neighbourhood Plan


Rory is reminding constituents to engage in the future of their area, as Eden District Council gives the green light for the first Neighbourhood Plan in Cumbria to be produced.

Under new powers contained in the Localism Act, local communities can come together and develop a Plan for their area which, once adopted, will form part of the basis for assessing planning applications. Residents of 17 parishes, including and surrounding Kirkby Stephen, have formed the Upper Eden Community Plan Group (led by Brough Parish Council). Eden District Council has given the go ahead for the Group to produce a Neighbourhood Plan by agreeing that the Upper Eden area they represent is a suitable neighbourhood plan area. A Neighbourhood Area Application was received on 28th May 2012 and, after an eight week consultation period, the Council designated the area on 16th August 2012. Upper Eden is one of the first Neighbourhood Areas to be approved in the country, and there now follows a final consultation process for local communities.

Rory said: “Upper Eden is leading the way in this important new legislation, and I am proud and honoured to have been a part of the process. I am also delighted to know of Eden District Council’s backing of the pilot, and support of the area as being suitable for a Neighbourhood Plan: they have offered unstinting support and have shown themselves to be an innovative, community-minded authority. We need now for as many as possible to engage in the final consultation exercise, which provides the opportunity for all to comment on what they want for their area and to turn their aspirations into reality.”

Robin Hooper, Chief Executive of Eden District Council said: “Designation of this Order is an important step in enabling the people of Upper Eden to express their own vision for how they see their area developing. We will continue to offer our support to the UECP group as it progresses its plan”.

Councillor Malcolm Smith, Portfolio Holder for Planning and Economy, said: “We are delighted to have our first Neighbourhood Plan underway. Local people want the best for their area and are best-placed to plan for the right development in the right place. The Council is committed to offering the right advice and support to make this possible.”

Earlier this year the UECP Group put their Neighbourhood Plan proposals to the public. The comments received were used to develop a local consensus around a set of planning policies which govern issues such as; Affordable Housing for Local people, Housing for Older People and Broadband Connectivity of New Developments. The plan can be viewed at or at Mansion House, Penrith, CA11 7YG on weekdays between the hours of 10.00 am and 4.00 pm. Copies are also available in local libraries. Local people are encouraged to have their say on the Plan. Comments should be sent to Eden District Council by no later than 5.00pm Thursday 27th September 2012, by email to [email protected] or in writing to Planning Policy, Eden District Council, Mansion House, Penrith, CA11 7YG.

For more detailed information on The Upper Eden Neighbourhood Plan and Neighbourhood Planning in general, including a step by step guide please visit their website at If you require any further information contact the Planning Policy team on 01768 817817 or [email protected].

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