THE EYE NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN
(Last updated 12/5/21)
Headlines – The Eye Neighbourhood Plan is approved at referendum.
The Eye Neighbourhood Plan was put to a referendum on Thursday 6th June. Voters were asked ‘Do you want Mid Suffolk District Council to use the Neighbourhood Plan for Eye to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?’. 87.5% (664) voted yes and 10.6% (81) voted no. The Plan was therefore supported by more than 50% of voters which enables it to be become part of the Development Plan for Eye. Planning law requires planning applications to be determined in accord with the Development Plan unless other material considerations indicate otherwise.
The Examiner published her report on the Eye Neighbourhood Plan in October 2019. It can be viewed here - Eye_NP_Exam_Report. The Examiners role is to ensure that the Plan conforms to Government and District Council Planning Policy. Overall the changes she proposes should strengthen the Plan and ensure that the wishes of local people are respected in future planning decisions. All the material collected during the Examination process can be viewed here - https://www.midsuffolk.gov.uk/planning/neighbourhood-planning/neighbourhood-planning-in-mid-suffolk/eye-neighbourhood-plan.
The District Council has agreed that the Plan should be put to a Referendum once all the changes recommended by the Examiner have been made. All voters in the Town will now get the chance to say whether they support the Plan in a Referendum. If more than 50% of people who vote support the Plan it will become part of the Development Plan. That is important because planning applications that conform to the Development Plan are normally approved while those that don’t are normally refused (but not always as other issues (know as ‘material considerations’) have to be taken into account as well).
The Plan has already been tested. As it has already been through the Examination stage it is now an important ‘material consideration’ in deciding whether planning applications and appeals should be refused or approved. A planning application for 126 homes between Tuffs Road and Maple Way , on a site NOT allocated for development in the Neighbourhood Plan, was refused by Mid Suffolk District Council in 2019 and the landowners have appealed. A Public Inquiry to consider this appeal was held in the Town Hall over two weeks at the end of January. The Town Council and the District Council both fielded a Barrister and expert witnesses to argue against the proposal. The Town Council’s witness argued that the site was rejected by local people when the Neighbourhood Plan was prepared and that the Appeal should be refused. The Inspector’s decision is expected on the 6th March.
The Plan has also influenced Mid Suffolk District Council to amend its proposals for the Paddock House site. It held a consultation in January on the revised proposals which protect the green space fronting Church Street from development. A planning application is expected shortly.
In the meantime work has started to implement the Plan – see next section ‘Making it Happen’.
Please contact Andy Robinson, Eye Town Council Project Co-ordinator, on firstname.lastname@example.org, with any queries.
Making it happen
The Town Council is now working with others to implement the Plan:
1. An implementation group has now been set up to oversee a range of projects including Paddock House, Traffic Management, Other Infrastructure Improvements and Affordable Housing.
2. A partnership with the County and District Councils has been established to address traffic problems. This will look at reviewing Traffic Orders, enforcement of on street car parking, new car parking, lorry routing and parking, enforcement of lorry routing and parking and controlling the impact of development outside of the town. A meeting with officers of the District and County Councils on 17th May was held to walk the Town and a number of lorry drivers helped to demonstrate the problems very well!
3. Using the Plan to control unwanted development – District Councillors on the Development Control Control Committee praised the Plan when considering a proposal for housing development off Tufts Road in March. The District Council refused the application for 126 homes which has been appealed by the applicant leading to a Planning Inquiry that will take place on January 21st – 31st at the Town Hall – see above.
4. The Town Council and Peter Gould, newly elected District Councillor, worked with the District Council on designs for the Paddock House site that retain the open space on Church Street – see above.
5. The High School is preparing a bid for CIL funding to develop the proposed public use sports facility.
6. Funding applications are being made to replace the Moors Play Area at the Community Centre with new exciting equipment costing around £100,000
If you would like to help implement the Plan contact email@example.com
The Implementation Group and Project Groups
Agenda’s for the Implementation Group
Notes of meetings of the Implementation Group
Agenda’s for meetings of the Traffic Management Plan Project Group
Notes of meetings of the Traffic Management Plan Project Group
Agenda’s for meetings of the Town Council Land and Housing Project Group
Notes of meetings of the Town Council Land and Housing Project Group
Note of TCLAH project group 5 6 19; Note of TCLAH project group 24 7 19; NB the meeting on 25/9/19 was a workshop and not minuted;Note of TCLAH project group 27 11 19; Note of TCLAH project group 29 01 20
Notes of meetings of The Rettery Project Group
Not yet met
Agenda’s for meetings of the Rights of Way Project Group
Notes of meetings of the Rights of Way Project Group
The Eye Neighbourhood Plan was submitted on 8th May - Eye Neighbourhood Plan May 19
The Steering Group has considered all the comments made on the Pre Submission Draft of the Plan and has prepared a Submission draft of the Plan for the consideration of the Town Council.
The Town Council met on the 12th March and approved the Plan for Submission to Mid Suffolk District Council.
The submitted Plan has to be accompanied by a Strategic Environmental Assessment which is currently being prepared by consultants. The Assessment is expected to be ready by the week commencing 29th April when it, the Submission draft Plan, a Statement of Consultation and a Statement of Basic Conditions will be submitted to the District Council. It will publish the Submission draft for comment. It is expected that this will take place for 6 weeks during May and June.
An independent examiner will then consider the comments made on the Plan and whether it meets the test of the ‘basic conditions’ (or conformity with national and local policy). It is expected that the examination will take place in July – its usually done through written submissions rather than a public hearing.
The examiner then submits a report to the District Council which considers whether the plan should be put to a referendum. The referendum is likely to be held in the late Autumn of this year.
The Submission Draft Plan
The Submitted Eye Neighbourhood Plan - Eye Neighbourhood Plan May 19
The additional or amended Supporting Documents are:
Supporting Document 19 – Design Codes – Supporting Document 19 – Design Codes (low res)
Supporting Document 20 – Comments and Responses on the Pre Submission draft - Supporting Document 20 – Summary of Comments and Responses on the Pre Submisison Draft Eye Neighboughood Plan.
Supporting Document 21 – Statement of Consultation - Supporting Document 21 – Consultation Statement
Supporting Document 22 – Statement of Basic Conditions - Supporting Document 22 – Basic Conditions Statement
Supporting Document 23 – HRA determination - Supporting Document 23 – HRA Determination_Jan2019
Supporting Document 24 – SEA determination - Supporting Document 24 – SEA_Determination_Jan2019
Supporting Document 25 – Strategic Environmental Assessment Supporting Document 25 – SEA Environmental Report
Supporting Document 26 – Special Landscape Area - Supporting Document 26 – Eye Special Landscape Area
Supporting Document 27 – Visually Important Open Spaces - Supporting Document 27 – Visually Important Open Space
Supporting document 28 – Biodiversity Networks Supporting-Document-28-Biodiversity-Networks
Revised Supporting Document 12 – Local Green Spaces - Supporting-Document-12-Local-Green-Spaces-Assessment (Revised February 2019)
Neighbourhood Plans have to be screened to assess whether they are likely to have a significant effect on the environment or whether they could have a likely adverse effect on European Habitat sites. If such impacts are identified further assessments are required. The screening report of the Eye Neighbourhood Plan finds that there is no requirement for further habitats assessment but that there is a requirement for a Strategic Environmental Assessment. This work has now been commissioned from AECOM through Government technical support.
The screening report is available here SEA and HRA screening report Dec 18
Pre Submission Draft Neighbourhood Plan
The Pre Submission draft of the Eye Neighbourhood Plan was published for comments between the 8th November and the 20th December 2018. Comments of support and objection are now being considered before the Plan is amended and Submitted to Mid Suffolk District Council early in 2019. The Examination draft of the Plan will then be published again for comments which will be considered at a Public Examination in Summer 2019. The Plan will then be put to a Public Referendum later in 2019. If more than 50% of those voting support the Plan it will become part of the Development Plan against which planning applications will be determined unless material considerations indicate otherwise.
Download a copy of the Pre Submission draft Plan here Eye Neighbourhood Plan hiRes Final
This form was available to make responses Response Form Final
The Plan is based on evidence which is presented in a series of Supporting Documents which are listed below.
These documents form the underlying evidence for the Neighbourhood Plan.
Supporting Document 2 – Constraints Map Supporting Document 2 – Constraints Plan
Supporting Document 3 – Background Evidence Supporting Document 3 – Background Evidence
Supporting Document 4 – Outcomes of Consultation and Engagement Supporting Document 4 – Outcomes of Consultation and Engagement
Supportng Document 5 – Site Assessment Supporting Document 5 – Site Assessment
Supporting Document 6 – Housing Needs Survey Supporting Document 6 – Housing Needs Survey
Supporting Document 7 – Housing Needs Assessment Supporting Document 7 – Housing Needs Assessment
Supporting Document 8 – Housing Viability Assessment supporting Document 8 – Housing Viability Assessment
Supporting Document 9 – Infrastructure Requirements (Draft) Supporting Document 9 – Infrastructure Requirements
Supporting Document 10 – Survey of Community Facilities Supporting Document 10 – Survey of Community Facilities
Supporting Document 11 – Allotments Assessment Supporting Document 11 – Allotments Assessment
Supporting Document 12 – Green Spaces Assessment Supporting-Document-12-Local-Green-Spaces-Assessment (Revised February 2019)
Supporting Document 13 – Historic Environment Supporting Document 13 – Historic Environment
Supporting Document 14 – Car Parking Strategy Supporting Document 14 – Car Parking
Supporting Document 15 – Electric Vehicle Charging Strategy Supporting Document 15 – Electric Vehicle Charging
Supporting Document 16 – Archaeological Assessment of Land at Victoria Mill Supporting Document 16 – Archaeological Assessment of Land at Victoria Mill
Supporting Document 17 – Landscape and Visual Appraisal Supporting Document 17 – Landscape and Visual Assessment
Supporting Document 18 – Maps of Flood Risk Supporting Document 18 – Flood Risk
Mid Suffolk District Council issued a notice designating the Neighbourhood Plan area in 2017. It covers the parished area of Eye Town.
The notice and area map can be found at: www.midsuffolk.gov.uk/EyeNP
It is now the responsibility of the Town Council to progress the plan to Submission draft stage, which we will do over the coming months with the help and support of local residents. It is then the responsibility of Mid Suffolk District Council to finalise the Plan when it will become, along with the District Council’s Local Plan, the development plan for Eye against which planning applications will be determined.
If you want to find out more please contact Andy Robinson, Eye Town Council Project Co-ordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or 07771942583
Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group
The Town Council has set up a Steering Group to oversee the preparation of the Neighbourhood Plan. The notes of its meetings are posted here:
Sept 17 - September /Oct 17 - October /Nov 17 - November /Dec 17 - December /Jan 18 -18 /Feb 18 – February /March 18 - March 2018 /April 18 - April 2018 /May 18 - May 2018 /June 18 - Notes of NPSG 13 6 18 1 Notes of NPSG 13 6 18 2 (July 18 no meeting) /Aug 18 - Note of NPSG 1 8 18 /September 18 – 2 meetings held to draft Plan/October 2018 Note of NPSG 3 10 18/
Background Evidence Base
Some of the other evidence examined is set out below.
If you have any evidence you would like to submit please contact Andy Robinson, Eye Town Council Project Co-ordinator on email@example.com or 07771 942583.
Eye Parish Plan
The last Parish Plan for Eye was published in 2009: Eye Parish Plan
Population and Housing
Suffolk Community Foundation published a report on deprivation in Suffolk called ‘Hidden Needs’.
The document is County-wide but maps within it have links to web pages which allow you to get information about wards including Eye.
Social and Community
Note of a workshop about improving support for older people in Eye held in December 2016 including an Action Plan: Older people
Note of a workshop about improving services for young people in Eye held in January 2017 including an Action Plan: Younger People
Planning and Development
Mid Suffolk District Council is currently preparing a new local plan for the period to 2031.
The consultation plan and various supporting documents can be found at:
This is a summary of the implications of the consultation draft for Eye: Consultation Plan
The Town Council held a drop in for the community to give its views on the proposals in the consultation plan and this is a summary of those comments: Drop-in Notes
An indicative masterplan was published for the land with outline permission for housing north of Castleton Way and south of the Airfield in 2015: Development Brief
The General Environment and Traffic
Included within the evidence base for the Local Plan is a study of landscape characteristics of the District:
A landscape appraisal of Eye Airfield was published by the District Council in 2011: Landscape Appraisal
Eye Town Council, Mid Suffolk District Council and Suffolk County Council commissioned a study to find out how Eye residents could have more influence on and play a bigger part in delivering public services. This is the report by Locality Matters: Eye presentation
Further detailed evidence will be added during the process along with a summary of this evidence.
If you have any comments on the Neighbourhood Plan at any time please contact Andy Robinson, Eye Town Council Project Co-ordinator – firstname.lastname@example.org or ring on 07771 942583.