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Designation of a Neighbourhood Forum

Those communities who wish to take forward neighbourhood planning are required to establish a "neighbourhood forum"; that has to be formally designated by the council.

Proposed Neighbourhood Forums will need to meet the following conditions:

  • the forum has been established for the express purpose of promoting or improving the social, economic and environmental well-being of an area
    its membership is open to:
    • individuals who live in the neighbourhood area concerned
    • individuals who work there
    • individuals who are elected members
  • its membership includes a minimum of 21 individuals each of whom: 
    • lives in the neighbourhood area concerned
    • works there
    • is an elected member
  • it has a written constitution
  • such other conditions as may be prescribed

It is a responsibility of the council to receive, publish, consider and determine applications for the designation of Neighbourhood Forums. These functions comprise several stages which are set out below and are contained in the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012.


This initial stage involves the council checking that the correct information is present within the application and whether or not there is an existing Neighbourhood Forum for the area. If there is already an existing Neighbourhood Forum for the area and that designation has not expired or been withdrawn the council may decline to consider any Neighbourhood Forum application made in relation to that neighbourhood area (Regulation 11).

Publication and consultation

As soon as possible after receiving a Neighbourhood Forum application the council must publish details on their website and in such other manner as they consider is likely to bring the application to the attention of people who live, work or carry on business in the area to which the application relates. Consultation on a proposed neighbourhood forum will be open for a minimum period of six weeks where representations can be made.

Consideration and determination of applications for designation

In reaching a decision regarding designation of a Neighbourhood Forum, the council needs to prepare reasons for its decision. If the decision is not to designate, these reasons need to be published as part of the refusal notice referred to below. It is considered good practice for any decision to be recorded in writing along with reasons, regardless of whether the decision is to grant designation or to refuse it.

Publication of a Neighbourhood Forum Application

If approved, as soon as possible after designating a Neighbourhood Forum, the council must publish the following:

  • the name of the Neighbourhood Forum
  • a copy of the written constitution of the Neighbourhood Forum
  • the name of the Neighbourhood Area to which the designation relates
  • contact details for at least one member of the Neighbourhood Forum.



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Article utilities:  Bookmark and Share Print Print this page Last updated: 12 Apr 2017 at 08:24