The Future of our Parish is in our hands. We are currently in the consultation phase of developing a Parish/Neighbourhood Plan.

All voices, views and opinions are important. Please if you have anything you wish to express please email:

We also have a facebook page where updates are posted and you may leave comments; LIKE our page here


To view the recommendations of the Parish Plan review click here


Further information on Our Parish / Neighbourhood Plan can be found at:

This is the short South Petherton Neighbourhood Plan consultation film produced by somersetfilm


The following is the latest report from Paull Robathan:

South Petherton Neighbourhood Plan

Establishment of Project team

June 26th 2015


In February 2015 the Chair of Parish Council Finance Committee developed a budget for the Neighbourhood Plan process based on evidence from other similar exercises across the UK.

Three key elements were identified

consultant support from expert (s) in Neighbourhood Planning

Administration support

Communications, public engagement and events

The 2015 – 16 Parish budgets identified reserve balances dedicated to the Neighbourhood Plan process of £24,213.

An initial grant application for project setup from government (Locality) has been applied for and £2,000 allocated, to encompass website set up, admin support and initial consultancy. A further £6,000 is available from September 2015 to be paid against an acceptable consultancy support proposal.

In total therefore £32,213 is budgeted for the period to end November 2016, which is the target end date. A review of expenditure to date will be made prior to precept setting for 2016 to allow for any adjustment necessary to ensure the plan is completed satisfactorily. This budget is in  line with other larger communities who have gone down this path.

Since the elections a number of changes in personnel have resulted. Graham Gatehouse is now co-chair of the Parish / Neighbourhood Plan alongside Paull Robathan who is now also Chair of the Parish Council. Dave Williams has been elected as a Parish Councillor and has stood down from the Neighbourhood Plan.

Additional members of the Neighbourhood Plan committee are being recruited.

Two walk-in sessions, one at The David Hall and one at The Blake Hall, together with responses to the website and to a broad initial questionnaire, have so far generated 61 closely types pages of comments and suggestions. Taken together  with parallel work on Community Land Trust and Transport infrastructure and a video consultation exercise across the community there is now a strong basis from which to proceed to detailed and substantive work.


Consultant Support

6 organisations were identified as being prospective providers of expert consultancy. 3 Somerset based organisations declined to bid due to conflicts of interest or lack of specific expertise. The other 3 organisations all made proposals against a common brief given to them by the Chairman of NP.

The NP committee considered the 3 proposals against the criteria of proven expertise, completeness and relevance of the proposal, cost and terms of engagement and local knowledge and reputation.

Stuart Todd Associates were considered the best option for South Petherton, with a significant number of similar projects completed successfully, and with a proposal that was clear and definitive in its identification of tasks, timescales and effort.

Agreement has been reached with Stuart Todd Associates, and a contract plus terms of engagement has been received which is recommended to the Council for approval and as a basis for ongoing payment of fees on an outline schedule.


Adminstration Support

It was originally anticipated that a mixture of University of Gloucester and University of West of England resources could be made available to undertake administration and research support. In the event neither of these sources proved able to deliver resources the project required.

After significant efforts to identify similar support opportunities we have been fortunate to engage up to 8 hours per week over the project period from a relatively local associate of a planning consultancy who has website, writing, research and planning knowledge and is due to start a Masters in Urban Planning at University of the West of England (the profile we originally aimed for).

Lydia Jones has started work as of this month and will invoice on a monthly basis.

Paull Robathan

Chair, Neighbourhood Plan Committee

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