It is exactly three years since Mawnan Parish Council first invited parishioners to a meeting to initiate the formation of a neighbourhood plan and seek volunteers who would progress the project. Since then much has been accomplished, and with the help and support of many of you in the Parish we finally thought we might have the end in sight.
In those three years we have sought opinions right across the Parish, with displays at community functions such as the Mawnan Fun Runs or the Farmers’ Markets, plus of course the questionnaire which 344 of you completed along with a total of 1325 of your hand-written comments. What we learned we shared with you in an exhibition in September 2018, and this in turn enabled us, after detailed study, to prepare draft policies which featured in another exhibition in September last year.
We then completed a massive document for formal submission and scrutiny to the Parish Council in early March this year – just as social distancing was starting to be introduced and Covid-19 brought everything to a standstill. At that stage, as those of you with long memories may recall, we still had a number of steps in the Neighbourhood Planning Regulations to complete, including:
  1. To reach final agreement with the Parish Council on the full NDP document – all 340 pages of it, as referred to above.
  2. A full 6-week consultation with members of the Parish, which would allow you to comment on the plan as proposed, including sending it to Cornwall Council and other statutory consultees for their comments.
  3. Having addressed any issues raised in this part of the process, the plan is formally submitted to Cornwall Council for legal scrutiny and notification to consultees, and for a further 6-week consultation across the Parish.
  4. Having hopefully passed all these steps successfully, Cornwall Council would agree with the Parish Council the appointment of an independent inspector to fully scrutinise our NDP for legal and planning issues. 
  5. Assuming approval from the inspector we would move to the final stage, in which Cornwall Council would arrange a referendum of all parishioners to seek your approval and adoption of the Mawnan Neighbourhood Development Plan.
Our expectation had been that steps 1-3 would be completed by late this summer, but we knew that the timing for the independent inspector would be out of our control. However, if everything went to plan we would have hoped to be moving to the referendum before the end of this year.

Then Covid-19 changed everything. Firstly it became apparent that we could not conduct the formal 6-week consultation outlined in step 2 above unless we could make paper copies of the plan available to you to consult (especially important for those without access to online copies or who found it difficult to read big documents on a screen). In addition, consultation implies the opportunity to ask questions, discuss details, and enter into discussion face-to-face with the team. Quite clearly this is no longer possible whilst social distancing is in place, so we are waiting on guidance from Cornwall Council as to how we can proceed when restrictions are eased.

But to add to our delay, the UK government has recently issued the following instruction:
  • Referendums: All neighbourhood planning referendums that have been recently cancelled, or are scheduled to take place, between 16 March 2020 and 5 May 2021 are postponed in line with the Local Government and Police and Crime Commissioner (Coronavirus) (Postponement of Elections and Referendums) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020 until 6 May 2021.
So, our step 5 will now not take place until this time next year instead of the end of this year. Disappointing but not disastrous! We will keep you informed as things eventually move forward, but at the moment progress is significantly delayed. 


In a recent Mawnan planning appeal the inspector made reference to our draft NDP by saying “Policy 5 of the draft NDP sets design principles for new development and the proposal (the subject of the appeal) would not meet with all the requirements, such as being well integrated with nearby structures. The evidence indicates that the draft NDP has been influenced by local consultation and events”. He goes on to say however, that as it (the draft plan) had not yet been the subject of formal public consultation (our steps 2 and 3 above) he could only attribute the draft NDP very limited weight in his considerations. But in his conclusion, in which he dismissed the appeal, he pointed out that “The proposal would not comply with the development plan when considered as a whole”. The fact that he had considered our draft plan, albeit giving it limited weight, does indicate that it was a factor in his considerations. Hence why we are so anxious to get on with the next steps and deliver your NDP for the benefit of the whole Parish. We are so close to achieving that goal!
The Parish Council has had to close the parish office and the clerk is now working from home.  By accessing the Mawnan Parish Council website here you can find up-to-date information, details of how to contact parish councillors or the clerk during the coronavirus pandemic, and, for example, how to volunteer or access Cornwall Council’s weekly newsletter.


Why not check if your friends and neighbours are receiving this newsletter, and if not forward this link to them so they can subscribe to future issues.


Acting on behalf of Mawnan Parish Council, the NDP Steering Group is charged with the widest possible consultation with parish residents on the plan they produce. Therefore, we maintain contact records from public events and meetings to demonstrate contact and to help us organise our business.  This data will be held securely and confidentially in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulations, will not be shared with third parties except where we use a bulk mail service such as MailChimp, and will be used to inform you of NDP progress and related matters of interest.  The data will be destroyed on completion of the NDP process.  Your rights to privacy are set out in our Data Privacy Notice which can be accessed via the website at  If you have any concerns about our data holdings please contact the Data Controller whose details are given in the Privacy Notice.
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