203A consultation on how people can get involved in Durham County Council’s planning process starts today (15 April).

The Statement of Community Involvement sets out how individuals, local communities and other interested parties can play a part in all aspects of planning, from commenting on applications to being part of a neighbourhood planning forum for their area.

It also explains how the council will consult on the County Durham Plan as well as providing advice to town and parish councils on involving local people and groups in the preparation of neighbourhood plans.

People can find out more and take part at www.durham.gov.uk/consultation.

Copies of the consultation will also available at all council libraries and customer access points with members of the public able to send comments to FREEPOST Spatial Policy or spatialpolicy@durham.gov.uk.

Cllr Neil Foster, Cabinet member for economic regeneration and culture, said: “Planning decisions affect everyone’s daily lives. Whether it’s a neighbour building an extension, a new business park bringing hundreds of jobs or the infrastructure, such as transport and schools, needed around larger developments. So it’s vital that we make sure that everything is in place to allow everyone to have their say and get involved with the planning process.”

The consultation is part of the council’s responsibility to regularly review how residents, businesses and other stakeholders play a part in planning issues. Anyone wishing to take part can submit comments until 5pm on Friday, 13 May.