East Staffordshire Borough Council is preparing a new Local Plan (formerly referred to as the ‘Core Strategy’) to provide an up-to-date strategy to deliver new homes, employment and commercial and community facilities, as well as ensuring the protection of the historic and natural environment over the period to 2031. The new Local Plan will, when adopted, replace the current adopted Local Plan of 2006. To council consulted on the Preferred Option Local Plan from 25th July – 21st September 2012.
The Preferred Option builds on previous consultation exercises, including ‘Issues and Options’ in 2007, and ‘Strategic Options’ in 2011, and reflects some of the comments people, groups in the community, businesses and stakeholders made at the earlier stages of the process. Since then we have also updated our evidence base, taken into account significant changes in national planning policy, including the enactment of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and subjected all options to a Sustainability Appraisal and an initial assessment of how feasible it would be to deliver infrastructure. In addition to the Preferred Option document, the Sustainability Appraisal Report was also made available for consultation.
What happens next
The final draft version of the Plan (the ‘pre-submission’ Plan), has been prepared and the consultation has now finished. Representations that have been received will help shape the Council’s Submission Local Plan which will be submitted to the Secretary of State for Examination by an independent Inspector during 2014.
After we receive the Inspector’s Report we hope to be able to adopt the final Local Plan (late 2014/early 2015). That document will be the overarching planning document (development plan) for the Borough, used to guide decisions on planning applications and underpin the Council’s proposals for investment and regeneration.
In addition, we have produced a Sustainability Appraisal Report which is also subject to consultation alongside the Preferred Option document, and a Habitats Regulation Assessment with Appendices.
Supporting Documents and Evidence base
A number of reports and documents have been prepared to support the Local Plan Preferred Option consultation document, and these are available via the Evidence Base section of the website.