Public consultation

18 June to 10 September 2020

It’s been a three year process to get to this stage. It involved a number of initial consultations, many discussions at Council meetings with stakeholders and the community, the commissioning of various assessments, and lots of research and analysis.

In January 2020, we launched a draft of the neighbourhood plan at Penryn Library for public consultation. Policies in the plan included protections for College Valley as a local green space to prevent future planning applications which would adversely affect the valley being supported, and a proposal to restrict houses of multiple occupation (HMOs) to 10% of dwellings to be achieved through a future Article 4 restriction implemented by Cornwall Council.

On the day, over 130 people dropped in to discuss the plan with Councillors and members of the steering group, view summaries of the policies, read the plan in full and provide us with feedback in person. The consultation was open for six weeks and ended on 2 March 2020. Our aim was to secure feedback from a representative mix of people. To achieve that, we also made the neighbourhood plan available online alongside an interactive map and digital version of the feedback form. The forms were designed to gauge support for each policy as well as providing space for comments.

We were very encouraged to see that on the whole, there was strong support for the policies in the draft plan. There were comments made in response to a number of the policies and about the plan overall. These were all carefully considered. In some cases, changes were been made to the draft neighbourhood plan to help address people’s concerns.

Many comments made reference to climate change. Clarifications and policies within the remit of neighbourhood planning were made including resilience of new developments against rising sea levels, good design should promote inclusion of community growing and allotments, a broader range of named technologies in support of providing renewable energy, and the inclusion of car charging points in new developments.

On employment, clarifications were made about safeguarded sites on Kernick Industrial Estate. And although it was already considered as an area providing important employment in the plan, Commercial Road was not explicitly recognised as an employment site. It is now defined as one and includes Islington Wharf and Jubilee Wharf.

Then on community infrastructure, the focus of green infrastructure was previously on protecting existing areas. This has been adjusted to state that we support new areas of green infrastructure in the same way. Public houses (Pubs) have also been explicitly recognised as community infrastructure.

In some cases, the comments fell outside what a neighbourhood plan is able to do. So whilst we recognised comments raised about car parks and on-street parking (outside of new development), business rates and bus services, the Penryn Neighbourhood Plan is not the place to resolve them. Climate change was a common theme in the feedback as well.

Following approval by Penryn Town Council, the plan was submitted to Cornwall Council for further assessment and consultation. Cornwall Council publicised and made the plan available for further comment for 12 weeks from 18 June to 10 September 2020. An assessment of the plan was also completed by an independent examiner to check for consistency with national and local policy.

Subject to some minor changes, they recommended the plan was ready to take forward to referendum.

Initial public consultation

Carried out in 2017

Comments on the development of the Penryn Neighbourhood Plan have been received at the following public consultation events:

  • Penryn Neighbourhood Plan Launch, 25 March 2017
  • May Day celebrations, Doorstep Green, 30 April 2017
  • Gig at Glasney, College Field, 4 June 2017

Following these consultation events, it was agreed by the steering group that the comments collected should be reviewed and analysed in order to:

  • develop a draft vision statement,
  • act as a starting point for working groups to explore each area in more detail,
  • enable further public consultation to check analysis and interpretation of comments.


The analysis work included:

  • Transcribing all of the public comments received at the initial consultation events.
  • Identifying the key themes arising out of the comments.
  • Identifying the next steps in the process including policy areas to be explored, the evidence base to be gathered and potential projects that could be taken forward by the town council or other groups.

The ‘Issues’, ‘Key Themes’ and ‘Next Steps’ outlined in the analysis documents are interpretations from the public comments, are not exhaustive and are subject to change.

The full transcript of public comments received during the initial consultation can be seen in the Public Comments Transcript (PDF). Summaries by theme can be accessed at the following links:

Recent assessments

Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) – 2020 (PDF)

The SEA has been undertaken to inform our neighbourhood plan. This process is required by the SEA Regulations. Neighbourhood Plan groups use SEAs to assess Neighbourhood Plans against a set of sustainability objectives developed in consultation with interested parties. The assessment has two aims. Firstly to avoid adverse environmental and socio-economic effects as a result of our plan. Then to identify opportunities where the environmental quality of the area covered by the plan and the quality of life of residents, can be improved.

Purpose of the SEA:

  • Identify, describe and evaluate the likely significant effects of the Penryn Neighbourhood Plan and alternatives
  • Provide an opportunity for consultees to offer views on any aspect of the SEA process which has been carried out to date

What is in the SEA:

  • An outline of the contents and main objectives of The Penryn Neighbourhood Plan and its relationship with other relevant policies, plans and programmes
  • Relevant aspects of the current and future state of the environment and key sustainability issues
  • The SEA Framework of objectives against which our plan has been assessed
  • The appraisal of alternative approaches for our plan
  • The likely significant environmental effects of our plan
  • The measures envisaged to prevent, reduce and as fully as possible offset any significant adverse effects as a result of our plan
  • The next steps for our plan and accompanying SEA process

Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA) – 2019 (PDF)

The HRA is produced to ensure that the policies and proposals of land use plans do not have an unacceptable impact on priority conservation sites protected under European legislation. In the case of Penryn this involves assessing the impact upon the Fal and Helford Estuaries as part of the wider framework of plans for Cornwall.

Penryn Neighbourhood Plan Site Assessment Report – 2019 (PDF)

This report builds upon work done previously by Cornwall Council. It provides objective and independent assessments of the different options that exist for new housing sites on the edge of Penryn. It looked at sites put forward by landowners and assessed them against a range of factors. The final report serves as a guide for the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group and Town Council on the potential for allocating other greenfield sites and will be assessed as part of the Strategic Environmental Assessment for our plan

Cornwall Council strategic documents

Cornwall Site Allocations Development Plan (DPD) – 2019 (PDF)

The latest draft of the Cornwall allocations development plan. This is likely to be adopted by Cornwall Council in the autumn. It allocates strategic sites for the mining towns across Cornwall, including Penryn.

Cornwall Local Plan Strategic Policies – 2016 (PDF)

Adopted by Cornwall in November 2016, this provides the strategic framework for development, including the levels of growth to be provided in Falmouth and Penryn. Our plan, when adopted, will form part of the policy framework. The policies in the Cornwall Local plan are also referred to in our plan where relevant.

Biodiversity Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) – 2016 (PDF)

Guidance recently adopted by Cornwall Council to provide advice to developers on how they should support biodiversity in new developments. Our neighbourhood plan includes a policy to factor biodiversity into new developments and refers to the SPD. This includes the provision of bat and owl boxes for example.

Evidence based documents

Falmouth and Penryn Town Framework – 2017 (PDF)

Produced to act as a vehicle for developing local policies and ideas for the area. The proposals were taken forward as part of the Cornwall Allocations Development Plan, which went to a public inquiry and is now close to being adopted by Cornwall Council. The town framework includes background information and sets out the strategic framework for the area, including elements such as the transport strategy and the investment package required to support anticipated growth.

Cornwall Site Allocations Heritage Assessment – 2017 (PDF)

Part of the evidence base for the Cornwall Allocations Development Plan. The report assesses the impact of proposed housing allocations on heritage assets, such as listed buildings and ancient monuments. It highlighted the value of the College valley in Penryn and on that basis, the proposed allocation to the west of the valley was reduced in size in the final DPD document. For our plan, this supports the importance of the valley and justifies protecting it going forward.

Falmouth and Penryn Housing Evidence Report – 2017 (PDF)

Produced to support the Cornwall Allocations Development Plan. The report sets out the methodology used to assess sites and estimates for the scale of likely growth from brownfield sites or infill development. For our plan, the report provides meaningful context, showing how housing could be delivered within the DPD to meet the strategic targets. It also highlights the pool of SHLAA sites submitted to the Council by landowners or developers to consider for allocation. Our plan also assessed these sites to consider if they are appropriate for development.

Falmouth and Penryn Housing Evidence – Environment Assessment (PDF)

Part of the evidence base for the Cornwall Allocations Development Plan. This report provides an assessment of the different sites considered in terms of their potential impact upon a range of environmental features. While it is assessing the impact of major urban extensions, it provides useful context for a variety of critical issues for the different sites around Penryn.

Community Network Area (CNA) – Employment Evidence Report – 2017 (PDF)

The report provides a strategic context for the level of employment land supplied within the Falmouth and Penryn CNA. In the context of our plan, it provides an assessment of the different employment sites against the criteria to be allocated as strategic sites in Cornwall.  It also assesses the potential for smaller sites in the town which our plan is seeking to protect for employment and commercial uses.

Heritage Impact Assessment for Proposed Sites FPH1 and FPH2 (PDF)

This report was produced by Cornwall Council’s Historic Environment Service as part of the production of the Cornwall Allocations Development Plan. It highlights and describes the importance of the College Valley and Glasney in terms of heritage as well as elements around the former Dales garage site.

Heritage Impact Assessment for Proposed Sites FPM3 and FPM4 (PDF)

This report provides an assessment of the proposed allocation in the Cornwall Allocations Development Plan of the land to the east of Tremough and north of Packsaddle. It assesses the historical features in the area and potential harm that could to them by developments. The focus is on a site outside of the Penryn parish and the area covered by our plan but it provides background evidence on elements of heritage value for us to take into consideration.

Falmouth and Penryn Landscape Assessment Report – 2011 (PDF)

Published by Cornwall Council, this report supported the Cornwall Allocations Development Plan. The study provides a survey of the land adjoining the towns and sets out an evaluation of the landscape value, sensitivity and ability to adapt to change. The report focuses on major developments called urban extensions but provides useful background evidence for the smaller-scale growth considered by our plan.

Conservation Area appraisals and plans

Penryn Conservation Area Appraisal – 2010 (PDF)

This report provides a description of the character of the Penryn Conservation Area. It identifies critical elements of the historic character of the town which together and individually create Penryn and are at the heart of its importance as a conservation area and historic settlement. Critical historical features which our plan seeks to identify, such as boundary features and views into and around the town, are defined in the appraisal. They will be used to support the policies we create for our plan.

Penryn Conservation Area Management Plan – 2010 (PDF)

While the appraisal focuses upon a description of the unique character of the historical elements of the town, the management plan identifies actions required to manage and conserve its character. This includes identifying character areas, particular threats to historic integrity, and opportunities for enhancement to the town’s historic character.

Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Urban Survey – 2005 (PDF)

This report provides an assessment of the historic character of Penryn giving us an understanding of the historic nature of the area as a basis to support ideas for heritage-based regeneration. It provides further background information to supplement that already in the Conservation Area Appraisal and Conservation Area Management Plan.

Urban design reports and frameworks

Falmouth and Penryn Combined Development Framework (CDF) – 2005 – Extracts (PDF)

Commissioned by the former Carrick District Council to provide options for change in the two towns. This extract of the report — also used in Falmouth’s neighbourhood plan — focuses upon areas of change in the towns. This report is from 2005, however, the areas of change are still relevant today. For Penryn, these areas include the waterfront, Commercial Road, the town centre, and Kernick Industrial Estate. The proposals for Commercial Road in our plan have developed in part from the vision outlined in this report.

Commercial Road Urban Design Study and Development Framework – 2002 (PDF)

Produced on behalf of Carrick District Council to provide support for proposals to try and regenerate Anchor Warehouse and the waterfront. The study provided a basis for the later redevelopment of Anchor Warehouse and Jubilee Wharf. The study identified opportunities for changes to the nature of Commercial Road and the waterfront and improved linkages to the town centre. Some of the ideas have happened organically, others have not come forward or were not supported. The report is from 2002, however, it provides a vision and designs worth considering in developing our plans for the area.