Skip to main contentAccessibility Statement

Defining settlement confines guidance

Settlement or village confines represent the extent of a settlement’s main built up area and where certain policies apply. They are used to direct development to the most sustainable locations whilst protecting the character of the countryside, villages and towns.

We have already defined confines for Primary and Secondary Service Villages across West Northamptonshire and for Small Villages in the South area. The presumption is that neighbourhood plans will not change the confines for Primary and Secondary Service villages or Small Villages. However, if there are exceptional circumstances that are supported by evidence, a change could be made.

Neighbourhood plans can define confines for Other Villages in the Daventry area using the criteria set out below. Exceptional circumstances would also need to apply to changes to Small Villages in the South.

A list of villages by area and settlement type can be downloaded here.

Qualifying bodies (QBs) can request digital versions of the defined confines to use in their NDPs after they have signed a licence agreement with us. This will also allow them access to other digital mapping data.

Daventry area

The Daventry Settlements and Countryside Local Plan Part 2 defined confines for Primary and Secondary Service Villages. Groups preparing a NDP for an “Other village” may choose to define confines and should use criteria in Table 3 on page 33 of the Local Plan. This is reproduced below.

Small Settlements/Hamlets do not have confines and are regarded as open countryside.

Criteria for defining village confines for Other Villages

The following will be classified as being inside the confines:

A. Buildings and curtilages which are contained and visually separate from the open countryside that are clearly part of a coherent network of buildings that form the village
B. Areas of land with planning permission for housing or community use that are directly adjacent to the village and are under construction

The following will be regarded as being outside the village confines:

C. Gardens or areas of open space which relate to the open countryside taking into account the character and appearance of the garden and the surrounding area
D. Individual and groups of dwellings and buildings that are detached or peripheral to the village and relate to the open countryside rather than the built form of the village
E. Areas of employment or leisure use, including public open space, that is detached or peripheral to the village
F. Land which would otherwise be outside the confines, even if it is between the edge of the village and a bypass
G. Rural Exception Sites

South area

The South Northamptonshire Part 2 Local Plan defined confines for the Primary Villages, Secondary Villages (A), Secondary Villages (B) and Small Villages using an approved methodology. Very small hamlets do not have confines and are regarded as being in the open countryside. 

Contact details

Email: [email protected]
Phone: 0300 126 7000

Last updated 13 April 2023