Community Led Planning

Our Guide to Community Led Planning will help you find out more about having a say in influencing local planning decisions and the county-wide structured plan.  Community Led Planning is intended to help find out how a village or town feels about itself – its strengths and weaknesses – and how residents want it to develop.

Community Led Planning (CLP) is essentially a step-by-step process that enables everyone to participate in, and contribute to, improving the social, economic, environmental and cultural well-being of their local area. Already undertaken by over 4,000 communities across England, it represents an unparalleled opportunity for people to take responsibility for making things happen locally. This approach to community empowerment has been developed and refined in rural areas since the late 1970s, largely as a response to the gradual withdrawal of public sector services and the increasing need for communities to look after their own affairs.

Over the years Community Led Plans have taken on different names including Village Appraisals, Parish Plans, Market Town Action Plans and more recently, Neighbourhood Plans. These have developed their own particular characteristics, tending to be used in different geographical contexts. One of the defining characteristics of all Community Led Plans is that they are not imposed from above, but instead initiated and led by local volunteers who steer their community through a step-by-step process.