Oakley's Neighbourhood Development Plan
Oakley NDP - Made Version (opens in PDF)
Click the image to download the Oakley Neighbourhood Development Plan - Made Version. Note: The link contains a PDF file


Committee Members

  • Pat Olney (Chair)
  • Gerry Sansom
  • Michael Frampton
  • Jane Walker
  • Tony Atkinson
  • Adrian Randall
  • Jette Randall
  • Nicholas Saunders
  • Rob Musgrave
  • Michael Carr
  • Paul Leinster


To protect and improve the village community and the landscape within which it sits.

The Parish Council registered with the Borough Council to produce its own Neighbourhood Plan and set up a sub-group consisting of Parish Councillors and interested residents in 2014. The sub-group developed the Neighbourhood Plan based on responses to questionnaires from residents, exhibitions at the Village Hall, other people who had a stake in the village, technical evaluations and national/local government guidelines/policies.

The draft neighbourhood plan was subject to a referendum in February 2020. The majority of those who voted supported the plan. The declaration by the returning officer stated -I do hereby declare that those voting have voted in favour of making the Oakley Neighbourhood Plan.

The Oakley Neighbourhood plan was declared “made” by the Borough Council on 23rdMarch 2020. This means the plan is now a statutory document which has to be taken into account when any planning application in Oakley is determined.

The plan was reviewed between June and November 2022. The conclusion from the review was that it was still a valid document. The review was signed off by Oakley Parish Council on 6th December 2022.

Latest News

Oakley Neighbourhood Plan update December 23

Oakley has a statutory Neighbourhood Plan which means that decisions taken by Developers and the Planning Authority should consider the Oakley NDP when they come to decisions.

Recently the NDP group and the Parish Council have had one success and one partial failure regarding development submissions.

There has been a meeting with the Developer on the High Street site. Fortunately, the Developer listened to the points raised, and the 13 houses initially proposed were reduced to 10. Other issues were listened to about drainage and safety of pedestrians. Both outline and full applications submitted to the Borough will be reviewed to ensure that NDP policies are met. 

The Station Road site Appeal regarding refusal of the outline plan for access to the site was upheld. The Inspector was only considering the access and not the full plan. The Inspector did not accept the arguments put forward but did put 33 conditions on the site. When the full plan is submitted, it will be argued that (about) does not justify a 33% increase in housing. The Parish Council will also ensure that all the conditions are met. 

The NDP which was reviewed in 2022 will not be reviewed again until the New Bedford Borough Local Plan to 2040 becomes statutory.

Further updates will appear here and in the Village Newsletter.


It is proposed that Oakley’s NDP will have 6 policy areas:

  • Overall Growth
  • Housing
  • Business and Employment
  • Landscape
  • Design and Heritage
  • Transport
Field of identified site


  • The government has said through the National Planning Policy Framework that all Local Plans must contain housing growth.
  • All Neighbourhood Plans also need to show growth if required by the Local Authority in our case, Bedford Borough.
  • If there is not an up to date Local Plan all growth is uncontrolled and any landowner and developer can submit plans and if turned down, they can appeal and at appeal permission.
  • The Borough Local Plan comes to an end in 2021 and therefore there is a need for a new one. The Borough is at present going through the process of producing a plan from 2021 to 2035.
  • The Borough through this process had a consultant assess housing need in the Borough.
  • The Borough then looked to the urban and rural area for where growth should be sited with the largest amount in the urban area, the rest in the villages.
  • Oakley was designated a category 2 village and was allocated between 25-50 houses.
  • Oakley had already started its Neighbourhood Plan so that the village could manage any growth proposed for the village.
  • At consultation events residents supported the need for more housing in Oakley. The preference was between 20-50 dwellings.
  • Residents also showed a preference for small developments (10-/+) rather than one big one.
  • At consultation all residents were concerned about traffic and resources, as no development site is free of these issues.
  • Oakley Parish Council commissioned a housing survey which stated there was a need for approximately 40 houses.
  • All the sites put forward by developers/landowners were audited by a consultant commissioned by the Parish Council, and those results set against the Village Road Assessment and our policies.
  • There were two possible sites that met the criteria.

The Parish Council and the Neighbourhood Development Plan Group when considering all these issues have selected these two sites, one of 20 houses and one of 30 houses to have the least impact on Oakley as a whole.

The two sites still need planning permission, must comply with the Neighbourhood Plan, the Borough Local Plan and the Government National Planning Framework and address such issues as drainage, highways, landscaping etc.

The Parish Council and the Neighbourhood Development Plan Group have, by making a balanced assessment of the sites always recognised the impact on individual residents. Their judgement was based on what the residents told us, the planning system from government, the impact on individual residents and the impact on the whole village. If we do not as a village manage the growth, then growth will still be imposed on us but we will have no influence over where it is located or what it looks like, this will be decided by the Borough Council.



Location Plan - Zoomed Out. Link opens in PDF
Exhibition Board Plan - Link opens PDF
Second site - High Street. Link opens a PDF

Oakley Neighbourhood Development Plan Reports

NOTE: The links below will load PDF documents (.pdf) or Microsoft Office documents (.doc, .docx, .xlsx, .ppt) and additional software may be needed to open them

Oakley Neighbourhood Development Plan


Final Examiners Report for Oakley NDP

ONDP Housing Needs Survey report 2016 - Completed by Bedfordshire Rural Communities Charity:

ONDP Oakley Road Study 2016 - Completed by J.A.C. Edwards MA CEng FICE

Consultant - Urban Vision reports

Oakley Neighbourhood Plan Local Green Space assessment February 2018 – Completed by consultants Urban Vision - LGS report 2018

Oakley Neighbourhood Plan Site Assessments report – Completed by consultants Urban Vision - UVE Oakley site assessments report

Other reports

Referendum Downloads

Meeting Minutes

Supporting Reports

Oakley Neighbourhood Plan Proposed Development Sites Assessment – Completed by Oakley Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group

Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA) – Completed by Dr.P.D.Carey, Bodsey Ecology Limited

Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) – Completed by Oakley Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group on behalf of Oakley Parish Council

Oakley NP Basic Conditions Statement March 2019 – Completed by consultants Urban Vision

Oakley Neighbourhood Plan Consultation Statement – Completed by Oakley Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group 



Following concerns about site 171 (opposite the Bedford Arms) which were raised in the consultation last October, the NDP Group discussed further with the landowner.  As a result the number of houses has been reduced to a maximum of ten, of which some will be single-story and the amount of green space has been increased.

Site 171 - link opens PDF