Local Plan

News and consultations for Local Plan

Latest news

The draft Local Plan was open for consultation between 4 July and 29 August 2017.

Alongside the plan there will be a number of technical background studies published including:

  • Sustainability Appraisal
  • Strategic Housing Market Assessment
  • Site Assessment Technical Document (including the results of the Site Assessment process)
  • Settlement Capacity Study
  • Growth Options Studies
  • Viability Study
  • Strategic Green Belt Review
  • Strategic Flood Risk Assessment
  • Employment Studies
  • Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment (PDF 1.7MB)

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Future consultations

There are formal requirements for notification and consultation under the Town and Country Planning Regulations 2012 which governs the Local Plan making process. There will be a number of opportunities for you to get involved in helping to shape where you live.

December 2017 / January 2018: We will publish the pre-submission Local Plan for consultation. All objections and comments (called representations) will be sent to the appointed Inspector to be considered during the examination of the Local Plan.

Following this consultation, the Local Plan will be submitted to the Secretary of State for an examination. This means the Local Plan and all supporting documents and all of the representations received will be sent to the Planning Inspectorate. A planning inspector will then undertake examination of the Local Plan to check that it is legally compliant and suitable to guide development in the area. Importantly, the inspector will only consider representations made on the pre-submission Local Plan, neither we or any individuals can comment at this stage. Anyone who has made representations during the development of the plan will be invited to add further information and/or appear at the hearings which are public sessions where evidence can be considered by the inspector. The inspector will then write a report with recommendations, and after this we will be able to adopt the Local Plan.

News to date

October 2017: Updated schedule for the Local Plan.

Last month, the government’s long awaited consultation which included new methodology for calculating housing need was published. The housing need figure for Central Bedfordshire that was generated by this standardised approach represents a 60% increase on our current housing need calculation.

At Full Council on 28 September 2017, Members voted unanimously in support of a motion to robustly challenge the proposed new methodology through the consultation process, on the basis that it is neither deliverable nor reasonable. Read our press release about this motion.

As a responsible local authority, we need to also anticipate the possibility that the new methodology may be imposed. Were the government to uphold its proposed methodology, this would apply to local authorities not proposing to submit Plans by 31 March 2018. In order to limit the negative implications of this the timetable has been updated and allows for consultation on the next version of the Local Plan (Reg. 19) in December 2017/January 2018 and submission of the Local Plan in March 2018.

Read the full Executive paper (link opens in new window)

May 2017: Due to the announcement of a general election on June 8 2017, we have moved the June Executive meeting to June 20 2017 and, subject to Executive approval, the draft Local Plan will then be published for consultation on July 4 2017 until August 29 2017.

March 2017: The Local Plan was paused pending the publication of the housing white paper which was published on 7 February. Having now considered the implications, the Local Plan timetable has been adjusted and a report on the draft plan will be taken to Executive on 6 June 2017. It is anticipated (subject to Executive approval) that the plan will be published for consultation from the end of June for 8 weeks. Our Overview and Scrutiny Committee will also be consulted during this consultation period.

December 2016: We intend to hold fire on publishing our Draft Local Plan (originally scheduled for January 2017). This is due to an anticipated Housing White Paper from the government, scheduled for January, which may have implications – for all local authorities – in terms of the number of homes we may be required to accommodate and on the process for development of the Local Plan. Read more about this decision under Local Plan 2015-2035.

November 2016: The Shaping Central Bedfordshire consultation closed 1 November. We will now collate this feedback and use it to inform the Draft Local Plan.

October 2016: We began the first two of 15 community planning events, which take place across Central Bedfordshire.

August 2016: Following the release of the ‘call for sites’ we gave agents and landowners a limited period of time in which to check that their submissions had been recorded accurately on the maps and schedules that were published on the website.

This process threw up a small number of changes in proportion to the overall number of sites and we have now updated the maps and schedules accordingly. Sites have been added to the parishes of:

July 2016: We held a workshop for town and parish councils on 13 July. Download the town and parish council presentation slides (PDF 1.6MB) .

July 2016: We held a workshop for stakeholders on 14 July. Download the stakeholder presentation slides (PDF 1.3MB) .

July 2016: The Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report (PDF 676.6KB) has been published for consultation.

June 2016: The draft site assessment criteria have been published for consultation. Once approved, these criteria will be used to assess the sites received through the 2014/2015 and 2016 call for sites.

May 2016: List of all sites submitted to 2014/15 and 2016 Calls for sites released.

February to April 2016: Call for Sites to landowners in Central Bedfordshire.

February 2016: Local Development Scheme (PDF 564.5KB) showing the programme for the New Local Plan approved for publication under delegated powers.

February 2016: New Local Plan for Central Bedfordshire launched.

November 2015: Development Strategy withdrawn at full Council.

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