Local and neighbourhood plans

Local plans

A local plan outlines how development and change will be managed in your area.

Local Planning Authorities must prepare a local plan which sets planning policies in a local authority area. These are very important when deciding planning applications. Independent planning inspectors must look at all local plan documents that local authorities prepare for an examination. The examination is the last stage of the process for producing a local plan.

The process should have fully involved everyone who has an interest in the document and they should have had the chance to comment. Local plans must be positively prepared, justified, effective and consistent with national policy.

The Planning Portal website provides a guide to local planning which explains the importance and role of each development document.

Local plans for Hampshire authorities can be viewed by selecting the relevant area on the map below. There are separate local plans for the New Forest National Park and South Downs National Parks.

Local plans for other Hampshire Planning Authorities

Basingstoke and Deane

East Hampshire






New Forest




Test Valley


New Forest National Park Authority

South Downs National Park planning information

Neighbourhood plans

We have produced a guide on neighbourhood planning. The guide:

  • shows what information, guidance, help and support we can provide
  • explains our main services that may be considered when carrying out neighbourhood planning
  • provides links to the policy guidance and to the webpages of our teams
  • explains the difference between our role and that of the district, borough, city councils or national parks
  • explains what we can't do

Given the wide range of duties and responsibilities we perform, it is important you engage us in your preparation of neighbourhood plans from the start.

Neighbourhood planning in Hampshire

Neighbourhood planning summary