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Neighbourhood Plan

A Neighbourhood Plan is a plan drawn up by a community. It sets out a shared vision and policies to shape future development of the area covered by the Plan. The Astbury and Moreton Neighbourhood Plan was adopted in 2017 with the intention that it would be valid as part of the planning process until 2030.

A Neighbourhood Plan helps to identify projects that are most important to the community and to make sure that development takes place in a way and at a pace that suits the residents of the plan area.

Neighbourhood Plans cannot say ‘no’ to development.

Since our Neighbourhood Plan came into force in 2017 there have been several important changes to national and local government planning legislation. Because of these changes, our Plan needs to be updated and the Parish Council has formed a Neighbourhood Plan Review Group of local residents to make sure our Plan is as strong as it can be for the future.

We are now consulting on the draft version of the modified Plan.

The modified comprises two documents:

Please send us your comments on and suggestions for the Plan either by email to or by post to Foxfield House, Astbury, Congleton CW12 4RQ, by midnight, 3 March 2024.

Preparing the Plan

The Localism Act 2011 gave communities the the power to develop Neighbourhood Development Plans (usually known as Neighbourhood Plans), and the processes by which a community develop or modify a Plan is laid out in The Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012): in the rest of this page, these are referred to as simply as “the Regulations”.

Where we are now

At an open meeting in early 2022, we engaged with you, our community to identify areas of concern, and using the results of this engagement have drawn up draft revised Vision and Aims for the Plan.

We have asked you to complete our questionnaire to check and refine the Vision and Aims.

We have collated and analyzed your completed surveys. Most respondents agreed with the stated Vision and Aims, but several suggested an improvement to one Aim, which we will adopt.

Image of consultation results front page, linking to PDF of full report.

Meanwhile, you can read what your fellow residents thought in the collated consultation results.

We have analyzed the results and used them to:

  • Update the Plan’s evidence base to reflect most recent data
  • Update references to most recent national and Cheshire East policy
  • Review and revise the Plan policies, including their supporting rationale and evidence

What we are doing now

We are now asking you (and other consultees, as required by Regulation 14 and the related Schedule 1 of the Regulations) to give us your views on the draft Plan — a process known as pre-submission consultation, see above.

What we still need to do

Once we have received your feedback, we will further revise the Plan from your feedback.

Getting the Plan adopted

Once we have a draft Plan that we are all satisfied with, we need to embark on a formal process in order that it is adopted and becomes part of planning law for our two parishes.

The first step is to submit the revised Plan to Cheshire East Council, our planning authority. If Cheshire East regards the changes to be minor (i.e. that they would not materially affect policies made by the Cheshire East) then the revised plan will be adopted without any further activity.

However, we expect that Cheshire East will not regard the changes to be minor: in this case we will need to invite a list of bodies including nearby local councils, utility companies and other organizations to comment on the revised Plan — a process known as post-submission consultation (Regulation 15).

We will then revise the Plan to take into account any responses to the consultation and submit it to an external Examiner appointed by Cheshire East — (Regulation 17).

We may have to make further changes required by the Examiner — (Regulation 17A). What happens next depends on whether the Examiner decides that our overall revisions are so significant or substantial as to change the nature of the Plan as originally made. If they do not, then the revised Plan can be adopted immediately, If they do, however, then the revised Plan must be approved in a referendum of both parishes — (Regulation 18).