The Shadingfield, Sotterley, Willingham and Ellough (SSWE) Neighbourhood Development Plan - What's going on?

Further progress has been made with developing a Neighbourhood Plan for the parishes of Shadingfield, Sotterley, Willingham and Ellough, and it is hoped that this work can be brought to a conclusion in 2022. Following a public consultation in the early part of 2022, the draft plan, and a number of supporting documents, have been updated and submitted to East Suffolk Council prior to independent examination.

East Suffolk Council is now publicising the plan and inviting representations; this consultation period runs from 13th July to 7th September. All representations made to ESC will be forwarded to the examiner for consideration alongside the plan. Subject to the plan successfully completing all the relevant regulatory stages, the policies and proposals contained in the plan will be used by East Suffolk Council in the determination of planning applications within the Shadingfield, Sotterley, Willingham and Ellough Neighbourhood Area.

The ESC notice advertising the consultation, as well as full versions of the plan and supporting documents are available to download from the Parish Council website (below).

Public Consultation Notice

Read the Plan here

Map of the Neighbourhood Area

Basic Conditions Statement

Neighbourhood Plan Consultation Statement

Habitats Regulations Screening Assessment

Strategic Environmental Assessment Screening Opinion Determination (March 2021)


What is a Neighbourhood Plan? A Neighbourhood Plan (also called a Neighbourhood Development Plan) sets out the views of the local community on the future development of our villages. It can shape and direct future planning by identifying the local sites that residents consider to be most suitable for development and key areas for protection such as historic buildings and open spaces. It can also set out the other improvements required alongside any development, such as playing fields. However, it cannot prevent any development from taking place in an area or propose less growth than the District Council's Local Plan.

Who develops a Neighbourhood Plan? You, the residents of the villages, do! The process is led by the Joint Parish Council, but the whole community must be involved in the decision to develop a Neighbourhood Plan and in deciding what it contains. The Parish Council will also need the participation of some residents as part of the Steering Group that will take on the day-to-day tasks of preparing the Plan. There will be a community referendum at the end of the process, which will determine whether the plan will be adopted or not.

What use does it have? Once the necessary processes have been successfully completed and the Neighbourhood Plan is approved by the electorate of the parishes and adopted by the District Council, it becomes part of that Council's Local Plan and must be taken into account in making any planning decisions. If you do not have a Neighbourhood Plan, your voice will not be heard. A Neighbourhood Plan carries statutory weight, but it cannot be used to stop all development in the villages.

Where can I find out more?

This is your opportunity to influence the future shape
of our villages and communities!