Designed by Ian Parris © Nether Heyford Neighbourhood Plan

Nether Heyford

Fabulous Fête Day!

It was really encouraging to see so many people attending this year’s village fête, and great to have so many visitors to the Neighbourhood Plan Group’s marquee. We had lots of new information to display, centred around the availability and appropriateness of potential sites for development that would fulfil the needs of Nether Heyford villagers.

So why did we undertake site assessments?

As a group we were advised by South Northants Council (SNC) that we should include a ‘preferred site’ or ‘sites’ in our plan, to give us sufficient control over what is built, when and where. Also, our professional support was of the view that we should include a preferred site for development in our Plan.

Why those sites?  

Any potential development can only take place either within the village confines or abutting the confines. In a very positive step, SNC will not allow development away from the village confines. A number of sites came forward as a result of calls for sites in 2014 (West Northamptonshire Joint Core Strategy) and 2016 (as part of SNC work on the Local Plan) which all surround the village. These sites were displayed on a map for everyone to see the scope and scale of their potential.

How did we come up with our evaluation tests and scoring mechanism?

Starting with the SNC standard tests, we also looked at other Neighbourhood Plans and came up with an extended list of tests and a scoring mechanism which we felt would best identify preferred site(s).

Does this mean that development will only happen on one site?

Not necessarily, we are still working on numbers and types of housing which will meet the housing requirements for people within Nether Heyford.  It may be that two, three, or even four sites might be identified as a result of the assessment process where development could be supported over time. The majority of people who responded to the questionnaire would like to see development of between 11 and 25 homes between now and 2029.  The majority would also like to see more than 10 homes being built at one time to attract revenue for the village. Overall, the need appears to be manageable over the next dozen years or so and remains moderately low in terms of numbers.

On fête day, there was an overall positive response to how the group have undertaken the process, and to the preliminary scoring of the sites. Once these are finalised, the group can include the findings in our Neighbourhood Plan, which can then move forward to a pre-submission version. Thanks to everyone who took the time to speak to us, and for their valuable insights and comments.


Tom Dodd (Vice Chair NHNPG)