Planning Aid England has produced a suite of resources to assist those developing a neighbourhood plan. The resources provide practical tips and advice on various stages of the neighbourhood plan process from designating the neighbourhood area to submitting the plan for examination. They are designed for community groups to use and include a series of how to guides, templates and videos.
Neighbourhood planning groups are using a variety of tools and techniques to engage the community in the development of their neighbourhood plan. Tools include digital media such as Twitter, Stickyworld and Survey Monkey. In order to assist groups the Eden Project have also published a very useful set of "social media guidelines for neighbourhood planning."
PPGIS research group at The University of Manchester are developing and testing web-based Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to enhance public involvement and participation in planning (including neighbourhood planning) and decision making. The mapping tool is still work in progress and it is likely to be completed by October 2015. It offers an interesting platform and method to gather evidence and assist with the development of a neighbourhood plan and has thus far proved a useful tool in the development of Bootle Neighbourhood Plan in Cumbria. The Toolkit will be freely available to other neighbourhood planning groups once the pilot project is completed later this year.
The Centre for Sustainable Energy have published a report exploring what communities can do, through Neighbourhood Planning, to mitigate and adapt to climate change and tackle fuel poverty.
Neighbourhood Plan successfully passed referendum in July 2015.
If you want to build or rebuild community facilities such as community halls, shops or training centres, there is now a straightforward way to achieve planning consent without having to seek permission from your local planning authority. It's called the Community Right to Build.