Since April 2012, local communities have been able to produce Neighbourhood Plans for their local area, putting in place planning policies for the future development and growth of the neighbourhood.
A Neighbourhood Plan may contain a vision, aims, planning policies, proposals for improving the area or providing new facilities, or allocation of key sites for specific kinds of development.
Neighbourhood Plans relate to the use and development of land and associated social, economic and environmental issues. They may deal with a wide range of issues (like housing, employment, heritage and transport) or may focus on one or two issues that are of particular importance in a local area.
A Neighbourhood Plan will be subject to examination and referendum and then form part of the Local Development Plan. This statutory status gives Neighbourhood Plans far more weight than some other local planning documents, such as parish plans, community plans and village design statements. In other words, they have to be considered by the planning authority in making decisions that affect Oxenhope, a topic that has on occasion been a little controversial locally.