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Thursday, 01 September 2016

Following a massive 26.93% turn-out, residents have voted an overwhelming


to Newark & Sherwood District Council using the Neighbourhood Plan for Southwell to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area. 

The results of the referendum were as follows:

Total no of ballot papers: 1461

Total no of votes cast in favour of YES: 1351

Total no of votes cast in favour of NO: 109

Total no of void ballot papers: 1

 Majority: 1242

Eligible electorate for referendum: 5426

Percentage turnout: 26.93%

For a copy of THE SOUTHWELL NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN including maps and information about the process it has involved please click on the following link:


Southwell NP Referendum with maps.pdf Southwell NP Referendum with maps.pdf  



The Localism Act (2011) empowers communities to produce a Neighbourhood Plan which allows them to shape new development in their area setting out a vision covering local issues such as where new homes, shops or offices should go and what green spaces should be protected.  Southwell Town Council was the first in the Newark & Sherwood district to establish a Neighbourhood Area in December 2012 and since that time has been developing its plan.  A Working Party of the Town Council was established in June 2013 and this Steering Group has now completed the Neighbourhood Plan. The submission document which has been presented and accepted by Newark and Sherwood District Council is now due to be votes on by the residents of Southwell.

If approved following Public Examination, the Neighbourhood Plan will be a statutory planning document and its purpose is to provide a framework for future development and growth in Southwell.  It looks to the long term - to 2026 - but can be reviewed from time to time, so can be updated as things change.  The Neighbourhood Plan has to be in "general conformance" to the Local Development Plan.  The LDP has been created and adopted by Newark & Sherwood District Council.  Part of the LDP has defined land in Southwell suitable for housing in addition to those already built or where planning permission is already approved, and a further 6 to 7 hectares of employment land. While the Neighbourhood Plan cannot amend this requirement, it can look at other aspects of planning such as where further allocations of housing could go, types and designs of houses, and the impact on infrastructure, services and the environment of the town including issues around flooding risk.

Community Engagement

The Neighbourhood Plan is a Community project - written by the Community for the Community.  Here are some of the ways we have engaged with the communities of Southwell:

  • Public Meetings
  • Questionnaires and Surveys
  • Articles in local newspapers
  • Dedicated Neighbourhood Plan Website

The engagement process culminates in a referendum of residents in Southwell on 22nd September 2016.

Theme Group and Steering Group

The work of the Neighbourhood Plan was split between five theme groups:

  • Housing
  • Environment
  • Work and Retail

  • Getting Around

  • Education, Leisure and Wellbeing

The Theme Groups and Steering Group were made up of local people volunteering their time for free, managed by a working group of Southwell Town Council.