Under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended), the Council has a statutory duty to assist communities in the preparation of Neighbourhood Development Plans (and Orders) and to take plans through the processes of examination and referendum.
The Localism Act 2011 (Part 6, Chapter 3) sets out the Local Planning Authority’s responsibilities under Neighbourhood Planning.
This Decision Statement confirms that the modifications proposed by the examiner, in his report dated 29 October 2021, have been accepted by both Colchester Borough Council and Marks Tey Parish Council. The draft Marks Tey Neighbourhood Plan will be altered to reflect these changes and the Plan will proceed to referendum.
The Marks Tey Neighbourhood Plan covers the area designated by Colchester Borough Council as the Neighbourhood Plan Area on 16 September 2015.
Following the submission of the Marks Tey Neighbourhood Plan to the Council, the Plan was published, from 22 February to 5 April 2021, inviting representations, in accordance with The Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulation 2012 - Regulation 16.
Mr Peter Biggers, BSc Hons, MRTPI, AIHBC, was appointed by Colchester Borough Council with the consent of Marks Tey Parish Council, to independently examine the Marks Tey Neighbourhood Plan and to prepare a report of the examination.
The Examiner’s Report which was issued on 29 October 2021 concluded that subject to modifications recommended by the examiner being made, the Marks Tey Neighbourhood Plan met the Basic Conditions set out in legislation and should proceed to a referendum.
In recommending that the modified Plan proceed to referendum, the Examiner considered whether or not the Referendum Area should extend beyond the Designated Neighbourhood Area. The examiner recommended that the Referendum Area should extend to those persons entitled to vote who are resident in the Designated Plan Area.
Section 18 (1) c of the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 requires the Local Planning Authority, in this case Colchester Borough Council, to outline what action to take in response to the recommendations of the Examiner made in a report under paragraph 10 of Schedule 4a to the 1990 Act (as applied by Section 38A of the 2004 Act) in relation to a Neighbourhood Plan.
Having considered each of the recommendations set out in the Examiner’s Report and their reasoning, these have been accepted by Colchester Borough Council and Marks Tey Parish Council.
Colchester Borough Council agrees with the Examiner that the Referendum Area should be applied to the Designated Neighbourhood Area.
Colchester Borough Council accept that the changes are necessary to ensure that the draft Plan meets the Basic Conditions as set out in legislation.
The Examiner’s Report, including Appendix 3 (Recommendation 19; Typographical and Formatting Corrections), outline the recommendations of alterations to be made to the draft Plan under paragraph 12(6) of Schedule 4B to the 1990 Act (as applied by Section 38A of 2004 Act).
The Marks Tey Neighbourhood Plan 2020 - 2033, with proposed revisions, complies with the legal requirements and Basic Conditions set out in the Localism Act 2011, and can therefore proceed to referendum.
A referendum will now be held which will ask the question: “Do you want Colchester Borough Council to use the Neighbourhood Plan for Marks Tey to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?”. Further details regarding the referendum will be published in due course.
I recommend that the Marks Tey Neighbourhood Plan 2020 - 2033 should proceed to a referendum based on the Neighbourhood Plan Area agreed by Colchester Borough Council on 16 September 2015.
I am taking the above decision as I agree with the advice set out in the Examiner’s Report for the Marks Tey Neighbourhood Plan in accordance under paragraph 10 of Schedule 4B to the 1990 Act (as applied by section 38a of the 2004 Act) in relation to the Neighbourhood Plan.
I declare that I have no personal or prejudicial interest in respect of this decision.
Strategic Director - Policy and Place