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The West Bedlington Neighbourhood Plan will guide development in the town to 2036. The town council has been working to develop the plan, informed by community feedback and has now reached the stage where your views are needed on the policies and proposals in the draft plan.

Neighbourhood Planning

West Bedlington Neighbourhood Plan

Pre-Submission Draft – February 2021 Consultation

West Bedlington Town Council has prepared a draft neighbourhood development plan for the West Bedlington Neighbourhood Area. The plan proposes a number of planning policies which, once adopted, must be used in the determination of planning applications within the parish.

In accordance with the planning regulations, the town council is required to publicise the draft plan and invite comments. The draft plan, the associated sustainability appraisal (environmental report) and other supporting documents are available for feedback for eight weeks, commencing on 10 February 2021 and ending at 12 noon on 7 April 2020.

The draft plan can be viewed below:

West Bedlington NP Pre Submission Draft for consultation

Draft Policies Map – West Bedlington NP Portrait – A2

Sustainability appraisal (environmental report) is also available for comment:

West Bedlington Neighbourhood Plan SEA_SA for consultation FINAL

West Bedlington Neighbourhood Plan SEA_SA Non Technical Summary for consultation FINAL

The draft plan has also been informed by a background paper on local green space and protected open space.This is available here

West Bedlington LGS and POS Background Paper for consultation

Comments can be made in the following ways:

  • By email to: nplanwbtc@gmail.com; or
  • By letter to: West Bedlington Town Council, Bedlington Community Centre, Front Street West, Bedlington, NE22 5TT;
  • By completing the feedback form below and sending it by email or post.

Feedback Form Spring 2021 (Word doc)

Feedback Form Spring 2021 (PDF)

Any comments you may wish to make must be made in writing.

All comments must be received by the town council by 12 noon on Wednesday 7 April 2021.

All comments will be publicly available and will be considered by the town council in producing the final plan which will then be submitted to Northumberland County Council for independent examination.

Leaflet WBTC Pre Submission Consultation Neighbourhood Plan Feb 2021



As you may have read in the last issue of the West Bedlington Town Council newsletter, we have started the process of drawing up a Neighbourhood plan.

Thanks to all those who responded to our questionnaire in the last issue.

So where are we with the Neighbourhood Plan since the last update?

We have drawn up a number of DRAFT policies for our core values of the neighbourhood plan which are:

  • Housing.
  • Town Centre/Local Economy.
  • Heritage.
  • Environment.
  • Community Well-being.
  • Transport and infrastructure.

At the moment we have to work on two things which are called a habitats regulations assessment (HRA) and strategic environmental assessment (SEA).

These are required due to the fact we want to cover areas which could effect development and the growth of the town.

While work is ongoing on the HRA and SEA we have worked on a policy regarding Local Green Space and Protected open Space.

So what is the difference between Local Green Space and Protected open space?

  • Local green space (LGS) designation is a way to protect green areas or open spaces against development where they are of particular importance to local communities. LGS designations are made for use in local plans or neighbourhood plans. These plans can identify on a map (‘designate’) green areas for special protection. Once designated, LGSs receive protection consistent with national Green Belt policy.
  • Protected open space (POS) designation is a way to protect other areas of open space which are valued for their local amenity and for informal or formal recreational purposes, but which do not meet the full LGS criteria. Once designated, they should be safeguarded and only lost where a number of detailed criteria are met.

We have enclosed maps highlighting the areas we believe should be designated as Local Green space or Protected open space.

We would like to seek your views on whether you agree with the sites and there allocation as either Local green space or protected open space and if there are any other sites which should be included within this document.

Please reply via our office or email us with a description of the area, location and why you feel it should be included by 8th November 2019.

September 2019 Neighbourhood plan update

West Bedlington Wansbeck LP Portected Open Space (1)

West Bedlington Northumberland LP Portected Open Space & Green Belt (1)

We need your views to help is shape the future of your Parish!

West Bedlington Town Council is leading the preparation of a neighbourhood plan for the area.

What is a neighbourhood plan?

The opportunity for local communities to prepare a neighbourhood plan was introduced in 2011.  It enables people living and working in an area to guide where and how future development happens.  Neighbourhood plans are prepared by the local community through their town and parish councils, rather than being prepared by Northumberland County Council.

The West Bedlington Neighbourhood Plan will be used to make decisions on planning applications, giving it genuine influence on the future of our area.  

Plans can include a range of policies, including those which:

  • guide new development;
  • conserve and enhance the environment; and
  • support the provision of community facilities.  

Plans can also include community actions, which could be delivered by the town council as well as other local groups and organisations.

What has happened so far?

Following a number of periods of early engagement on issues for the West Bedlington Neighbourhood Plan, the town council has prepared a draft vision and objectives for the plan and are now seeking the views of the local community and other stakeholders.

How can I get involved?

The draft vision and objectives for the neighbourhood plan are included in this article.  It also provides information on the types of planning policies and other issues the neighbourhood plan could look to address.

The town council are launching this next round of community engagement on the plan at the Annual Meeting of the Town on Wednesday, 17 April 2019 between 6pm and 8pm.  The launch event is to be held at Bedlington Community Centre, Front Street West, Bedlington, NE22 5TT. It is a drop-in event so you can come along at any point during the 2 hours.

If you can’t come along, please have a look at the town council’s website and Facebook page which will contain details of all of the information displayed after the event.

You can submit comments in the following ways:

  • By attending the launch event on 17 April 2019;
  • By completing the form within this article and sending it to us at: West Belington Town Council, Bedlington Community Centre, Front Street West, Bedlington, NE22 5TT,  or
  • By completing the form available on our website and emailing it to us at westbedlingtontowncouncil@gmail.com  

Your feedback will be used to help inform the preparation of a draft neighbourhood plan, the town council therefore need comments to be sent back by Wednesday 1st May 2019.

Draft Vision

The draft vision sets out what the West Bedlington Neighbourhood Plan intends to achieve over the plan period to 2036, it will inform all of the draft policies and community actions contained within the emerging plan.

Draft Vision

By 2036 West Bedlington will comprise a sustainable and cohesive community.  There will be an appreciation of the importance of the heritage of the area, which is vital to its sense of place, as well as giving local communities a sense of belonging.    Improvements will have been made to the local environment, employment opportunities, services and facilities which will enhance the quality of life of residents.  Communities will be well-connected, via sustainable transport routes to major employment opportunities as well as and greater services and facilities beyond the plan area.   The important environmental and historic character of the area will have been maintained and enhanced by ensuring new development is of an appropriate scale and design, as well as reflecting the rural setting of the plan area.  Important green spaces will be protected for the benefit of future generations.

Draft objectives

To deliver the vision, four draft objectives have been developed.  The objectives clearly relate to the issues identified through early engagement.  The draft planning policies and community actions contained within the plan will deliver the objectives.

Draft Objectives

Objective 1 – Quality of life Ensuring new development is sustainable, contributes positively to the built, historic and natural environment of the plan area.  New development will achieve a balance between development and protecting important green spaces. Objective 2 – Community well-being Building on the strong sense of community across the plan area and recognising the diverse needs of existing and future residents. Supporting the provision of different types of housing that people can afford and meet identified needs, including those of an ageing population. Ensuring the local community have access to the services and facilities they need. Objective 3 – Local economy Supporting both existing and the creation of new employment opportunities across the plan area, as well as protecting and enhancing the vitality and viability of the town centre. Objective 4 – Accessibility Promoting access to sustainable modes of transport, to connect local communities to the services and facilities which they require.  Whilst ensuring the environmental quality of the plan area is protected by effectively managing traffic. 

Draft planning policy themes

Draft areas for potential planning policies have been identified under each of the relevant objectives.

Quality of life

Sustainable development:

  • Overarching policy setting out what the presumption in favour of sustainable development means within the plan area;
  • Promoting good quality design in new development to ensure new development reflects the character, scale, layout, mass, materials etc of the area;
  • Manage the location of new development and identify what development can take place in the open countryside.

Natural environment:

  • Protecting/ enhancing green infrastructure assets;
  • Protecting/ enhancing biodiversity;
  • Identification of areas of local green space and protected open space.

Built and historic environment:

  • Listed buildings;
  • Conservation Area.

Community well-being


  • Supporting infill development within the settlement boundary;
  • Rural exceptions site policy – to identify when development could take place outside the settlement boundary

Community services and facilities:

  • Protection and enhancement of community services and facilities

Local economy

  • Support for employment development;
  • Enhancing the vitality and viability of the town centre.


  • Active travel routes – routes used by pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders. They can include established pathways and cycle routes, public rights of way, bridle paths and paths of a more informal nature;
  • Transport and new developments.

Draft community action themes

  • Town enhancements;
  • Opportunities to enhance access to leisure facilities
  • Supporting existing local projects;
  • Provision of facilities for older and younger people;
  • Walking opportunities e.g. heritage walks/ health walks and improvements to existing paths;
  • Public toilets.

Your feedback

Q1.  Do you support the draft vision for the neighbourhood plan?  Yes ¨  No  ¨

If you have any comments on the draft vision, or have answered ‘no’ please explain below.

Q2.  Do you support the draft objectives for the Neighbourhood Plan? Yes ¨ No ¨

If you have any comments on the draft objectives or have answered ‘no’, please explain below.

Q3. Do you support the draft planning policy themes? Yes  ¨ No  ¨

If you have any comments , or have answered ‘no’ please explain below.

Q4. Do you support the draft themes for community actions? Yes  ¨ No  ¨

If you have any comments , or have answered ‘no’ please explain below.

Q5. Do you feel the Neighbourhood Plan should identify any areas for development or protection e.g. for housing or employment or protected green space. If so, please explain why you feel the area/ site should be identified and also describe its location, it would be helpful if you could attach a map to your response.

Q6. Are there any other issues that you feel the Neighbourhood Plan should cover?

Please use additional pages if you would like to provide a fuller response.

Following the consultation the town council will establish a steering group to help guide the preparation of the neighbourhood plan.  If you would like to be involved in the steering group please provide your contact details and let us know the reasons why you feel you should become a member.   

Neighbourhood Planning Documents

Neighbourhood Plan Application

Draft Vision March 2019 v1


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