Terms of Reference and Background

The area to be considered under the Neighbourhood Plan has been defined and accepted by Hart District Council as the Parish boundary of Hartley Wintney. Hartley Wintney Parish is a rural village community currently consisting of some 5500 residents. It is a commuter town to London from the nearby Winchfield Station and is geographically bisected by the main A30 road from London to the South-west. It has 71 listed buildings, a significant SSI on Hazeley Heath and centrally it has two areas of maintained common land. There is a ring of countryside around Hartley Wintney which keeps it separate from its surrounding communities and which should be preserved.

The Parish Council was first made aware of the need for a Neighbourhood Plan caused by the planning vacuum resulting from the lack of a Local Plan for Hart. A meeting was called by the Parish Council to which a cross-section of community representatives was invited and from that meeting volunteers were further invited to become a part of the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group. From this point the Steering Group acted independently of the Parish Council but sought guidance on legal or planning matters relating to Parish affairs.


The group consists of a Chairman, Secretary and Finance Co-ordinator, plus 5 committee members. In addition specialist representatives (eg the elderly, conservation, leisure) within the community may be called upon to advise or to form a part of sub-groups to advise and discuss different policy issues.

Members of the Steering Group will liaise with the Parish Council on a regular basis and the Parish Council has a regular item on full council meetings agendas.

The Group shall be quorate when at least half of the permanent members attend, ie 4 members, excluding specialist representatives discussed above.

The Steering Group shall meet regularly, no less than once every six weeks, to agree actions and discuss issues that arise. An agenda for the meeting will be posted publicly and will be circulated to members no later than 5 days prior to the meeting and Minutes will be kept of the meeting by the Secretary. A hard copy will be available for any stakeholder to view.

Members of the public can observe the meetings and speak at the Chairman’s invitation.

Decisions from sub groups should be relayed back to the full Steering Group for ratification and/or information.

Hartley Wintney Parish Council insurance will cover the previously agreed activities of the Steering Group and volunteers and members of the Steering Group will ensure that the terms of the insurance are not breached.

Objectives and Methodology

The Objective of the Steering Group is to produce a vision of Hartley Wintney between now and 2032 as agreed by the whole community accepting that no community can stand still but must evolve and to make recommendations for how the village should look, building on the principles of sustainability and growth.

To this end the Steering Group will

  • undertake the process of the Neighbourhood Plan in a democratic, transparent and accountable fashion giving consideration to the opinions and views of all members of the community
  • work with the Parish Council to ensure that they are fully informed throughout the process, and appropriate decisions referred to them when applicable
  • produce a time frame within which the Neighbourhood Plan will be completed to focus activity and planning
  • decide upon and, if required, consult with local specialists/groups or set up sub-groups to gather information, views and statistics to inform the policies of the Neighbourhood Plan
  • produce notes/minutes from meetings available to all stakeholders
  • actively publicise the draft NDP prior to Referendum


The Steering Group will use all methods at its disposal to engage with and communicate with the community to assess the vision for the future. These will include

  • Regular articles in the local Contact magazine
  • Liaise and consult as widely and thoroughly as possible with residents, partners and stakeholders to ensure that the draft and final NP is representative of the views of the residents
  • Notice boards
  • Website to include surveys
  • Exhibitions
  • Facebook
  • Questionnaires
  • Drop-in days/consultations
  • Leaflets, flyers, posters


Expenditure to be agreed by majority decision by the Steering Group.

Finance decisions must be recorded in the minutes.

Expenditure must fall within the level of funds held by the Hartley Wintney Parish Council for the purpose of the Hartley Wintney Neighbourhood Plan who will supply appropriate financial updates to the Steering Group in order to make appropriate financial decisions.

If expenditure is desired in excess of the funds available this will need to be referred to and agreed by the Hartley Wintney Parish Council.

Changes to the Terms of Reference

Any amendments to the terms of reference may be made at a Steering Group meeting and agreed by the majority of the Steering Group members. Amendments to be notified to the Parish Council.

Steering Group by a majority vote. At such point the Parish Council will be notified. Upon dissolution of the group any remaining funds shall be used for the good of the community, to fund projects within the Hartley Wintney Neighbourhood Plan.

The Terms of Reference shall be signed by the Officers of the Steering Group and any permanent members.