Thirston Parish News - July 2021

Neighbourhood Plan

The Independent Examiner has recommended some minor modifications to the plan in preparation for Referendum.  The Parish Council have 5 weeks from the date of the Examiners report to modify the plan and get NCC to sign it off after which time we have 8 weeks within which to hold the Referendum.  So please look out for the publicity advertising the Referendum as after everyone’s hard work it would be shame not to have a good turn out to vote on whether on not to adopt this Plan.

Boundary Commission Review  

You may have been made aware of the Boundary Commission's proposed plan to move Longhorsley Ward from the existing electoral area of Berwick upon Tweed to the Hexham constituency.  This would mean that Thirston Parish would move from under Anne-Marie Trevelyan in Berwick to Guy Opperman in Hexham.  You have the opportunity to make representation on this by 2 August. 

To view the proposals the link is:

To make representation the link is:

It would be useful for you to send your thoughts to the Parish Council as well.  The Parish council are there to represent the views of the electorate and feedback on your thoughts will steer the Parish Council as to how best to response to support the electorates views.


Proposed Local Plan Amendments

NCC are proposing to link Felton and Thirston as one in the Local Plan.  This has come about as Northumberland Estates make a representation at the Regulation 19 stage suggesting that West Thirston should be linked with Felton. On further review, NCC considered that not grouping West Thirston with Felton was inconsistent with the approach applied elsewhere in the county, and therefore put forward a modification to address this.   The grouping of nearby settlements relates to how they function in planning terms. This function is largely blind to administrative boundaries, whether they relate to a parish or wider electoral constituencies.  The grouping of the settlements should have no impact upon the Thirston Neighbourhood Plan. Quite correctly the Thirston Neighbourhood Area is identified in Policy HOU 3 in its own right stating there is no housing needs for the duration of the Local Plan in Thirston Parish. If anyone wishes to submit a representation on this matter during the Main Modifications consultation, please do so using the form available on the website quoting the appropriate Main Mod reference number, MM3.  The PC will be respond to state they have a different view however if NCC can guarantee this linking does not affect the zero housing allocation under Policy HOU3 then the PC will accept this linking with Felton.