Range of services

PlanSupport offers a range of services to meet your Neighbourhood Planning needs. These include advice on individual topics, ‘packages’ of advice and support, taking on specific tasks or more comprehensive support through the process.


A. Beginnings: “Is Neighbourhood Planning Right for You?”
An introductory session which focuses on the potential benefits of Neighbourhood Plans, what they cannot do, and the Basic Conditions  you have to comply with. Advice on alternative ways of achieving your community aspirations if an NDP is not suitable.


  • An initial fact-finding meeting with Parish or Town Clerk, Chairperson, Mayor, etc, to discuss needs and preparation of a support proposal.
  • Plain English “what’s involved?” presentation and discussion session with whole Council.
  • Follow up report with recommendations on the Neighbourhood Plan scope and how to proceed.

Prep time, a 4 hour fixed session and remote follow-up.

2 Consultancy days.

B. Laying the foundations: Starting up and Organising.

Advice sessions and practical help with creating the organisation that gives your Council the capacity to make an effective Neighbourhood Development Plan.

Includes guidance on:

  • Initial scoping of the Plan – what is most important? What themes do you want to cover?
  • Getting Parish or Town Council authority to proceed.
  • Defining the Neighbourhood Area.
  • Submission of letter & map to the Local Planning Authority.
  • Setting up a Neighbourhood Plan Team, and it’s status in relationship to Town/Parish Council structures.
  • Creating terms of reference for the Team.
  • Creation of effective agenda and note taking documentation and templates.
  • Budget preparation and forecasting.
  • Grant funding bid preparation.
  • Creating a realistic Project Plan, Risk Assessment and monitoring processes.
  • Briefing for website creation, use of Facebook and Twitter.
  • Signposting of other sources of advice and support.
  • Equality & Diversity, Health and Safety, and Safeguarding arrangements.

Prep time, two 3 to 4 hour fixed sessions,  with remote follow-up of approx. 8 hours.

3 Consultancy days.

C. From capacity to action: engaging with your community, and building the evidence base. Advice sessions and practical help in planning and carrying out community engagement.


  • Advice on the creation of a community engagement strategy, appropriate techniques for identifying stakeholders, questionnaire design.
  • Support for community engagement activity, including drafting of leaflets, press releases, preparation of display materials, providing training sessions etc.
  • Guidance on collection and analysis of the evidence base, explaining technical complexities.

Prep time, two 3 to 4 hour fixed sessions with remote follow-up of up to 8 hours.

3 Consultancy days.

D. From action to direction and content: defining your vision and objectives, outlining your strategy, and fixing policy intentions. Help in pulling together community engagement results, statistical and policy evidence to define a future vision for your Plan area.


  • Facilitation of a visioning event.
  • Briefing the NP Team on approaches to drawing up an outline strategy.
  • Advising on which of your aims is achievable through land-use policy, and possible methods of achieving those that aren’t.

Prep time, one 3 hour pre-event meeting, half day visioning event (inc. facilitation), one 3 to 4 hour session, with remote follow-up of 1.5 days, written Event Report in pdf format.

4 Consultancy days.

Getting it down on paper: the ‘technical writing’ stage. Help with the construction of planning policies that do what you intend and will pass examination.

Includes a:

  • A policy writing training session.
  • Facilitation of policy development sessions.
  • A review of draft policies for soundness and effectiveness, and to ensure they work together to achieve your strategy.

Prep time, one 1/2 day training session, two development sessions, and remote follow up of 3 days.

5 Consultancy days.


Alternatively help can be provided for individual tasks, for example:

  • Drafting of Terms of Reference for Neighbourhood Plan teams.
  • Creating a realistic Project Plan, Risk Assessment and monitoring processes.
  • Briefings for sub-groups tackling specific tasks.
  • Facilitating sub-groups.
  • Preparing Engagement and Consultation Strategy including short demographic analysis.
  • Creating and maintaining a website and social media such as Facebook and Twitter for two years.
  • Preparation of publicity and engagement materials.
  • Attendance at drop in sessions with community.
  • Preparing ‘video explainers’, mapping, exhibition materials.
  • Facilitating visioning event and follow up report.
  • Preparation of the evidence Base – collection and analysis of material, providing summaries , taking part in  evidence gathering, explaining  technical complexities.
  • Preparation of briefs for any special studies or surveys required.
  • Guidance on approaches to site finding and site assessment, Development Boundary assessment, Local Green Space assessment.
  • Appraisal and guidance on planning policy context (e.g., the Local Plan, NPPF).
  • Researching example policy approaches or strategies from other areas.
  • ‘Policy writing training session.
  • Technical writing’ of Neighbourhood Plan policies and proposals.
  • Preparation of sustainability checklist for SEA/HRA screening opinion.
  • Preparing Reg 14 Draft NDP.
  • Pre-submission assessment and preparation for the Examination.
  • ‘Sit beside’ support in liaison meetings with Local Planning Authority, other public bodies/developers.
  • Equality & Diversity, Safeguarding, Community Engagement and environmental sustainability policies and statements at all stages.
  • Preparation of Consultation Statement and Basic Conditions Statement.
  • Assisting with response to Examiner’s queries, and advising on Examiner’s Report.
  • Advice on how to achieve a successful referendum.

Amount of Consultancy days varies.


However, if you are seeking a more comprehensive service throughout the Plan process [including for example advising on and taking part in events, reviewing or preparing evidence base reports and documents, helping with project management etc], we can act as a ‘virtual team member’ for an agreed fee.

To see costs, see: Fees and Costs.

To find out more, please get in touch through our Contact page