Ministers announce £23m funding to support neighbourhood planning

Ministers have announced £23 million of funding to support community groups in the creation of neighbourhood plans.

DCLG: new neighbourhood planning funding announced
DCLG: new neighbourhood planning funding announced

The funding includes £1 million for grants during this financial year and £100,000 to enable groups to organise workshops on neighbourhood planning in their area.

The Department for Communities and Local Government said that the government would be making £22.5 million available between 2015 and 2018 to provide community groups with expert advice along with grant funding and technical assistance, claiming this is a 50 per cent increase in the value of the existing support.

The government said that local planning authorities can take advantage of a separate £12 million funding pot to help them meet the cost of assisting communities to produce neighbourhood plans, with an additional £25,000 for each plan or order that passes an examination.

Housing and planning minister Brandon Lewis said: "With more than a thousand communities across the country already involved in neighbourhood planning this government is giving local people a real say in shaping what gets built where in their local area, and encouraging much needed new house building.

"I now want to take this further, to get more people and communities involved in neighbourhood planning, and the £23 million I am announcing today will help many more community groups to bring their neighbourhood plans into reality."

Around 1,200 communities across England have already begun the process of neighbourhood planning, with 33 plans and one neighbourhood development order having been approved in local referendums, according to the Department for Communities and Local Government.

It said it will be appointing a partner in the coming months to deliver a new support programme for neighbourhood planning from April 2015.

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