Neighbourhood Plan

A Neighbourhood Plan for Seaton Valley

Neighbourhood planning was introduced through the Localism Act in 2011 and gives local communities the opportunity to shape and define how their area should grow and change in the future.

Neighbourhood planning powers can be used by parish councils to guide and shape development in a defined neighbourhood area. These powers include:

  • Neighbourhood development plans – setting out planning policies in a local scale
  • Neighbourhood development orders – granting planning permissions for a particular type of development in a local area
  • Community right to build orders – similar to neighbourhood development orders but which can be created by a local community organisation

Within a neighbourhood area, parish councils can use these powers to, amongst other things:

  • Shape where new homes, shops and offices should be built
  • Say what those new buildings should look like
  • Grant permission for new buildings that fit with local planning policies for the area
  • Influence transport infrastructure
  • Protect local heritage and the character of villages
  • Protect local green spaces/open spaces or sports and recreation facilities.

Following recommendations within the Village Plans, Seaton Valley Council  applied to Northumberland County Council for the Seaton Valley Civil Parish Area to be designated as a Neighbourhood Area. The consultation on the area application closed on 6th October 2015.

Please click here to view a map of the Seaton Valley Neighbourhood Area.


In July 2016 the Council met to discuss the Neighbourhood Plan.  They decided, from the comments that had been received from consultation in the five villages, that there would be four main themes for the plan to concentrate on:

  • Housing
  • Economy
  • Environment
  • Social

Please click here to view a copy of the agreed themes.


To start the Neighbourhood Planning process a Working Group has been formed in New Hartley.  The group, that is made up of local residents, will look at New Hartley in particular but will feed into the Seaton Valley Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group.

The inaugural meeting of the New Hartley Working Group was held on the 13 December 2016.  Notes of the meeting are available through the folllowing link – Meeting Notes


If you would like to become involved and help shape the plan for your area, please contact David Freeman on 0191 2379870 or e-mail engagement@seatonvalleycommunitycouncil.gov.uk