Introduction

Purpose of the document.

The North Somerset Council Sites and Policies Part 2: Site Allocations Plan is a Local Plan prepared in accordance with the Town and Country Local Planning (England) Regulations 2012 (section 6). Once adopted it will be a development plan document. Planning decisions must be taken in accordance with the development plan unless material considerations indicate otherwise.  

Following adoption of the North Somerset Core Strategy in April 2012, the Council approved a Consultation Draft Sites and Policies Plan in February 2013 and undertook public consultation. Further progress was delayed given the legal challenge to the Core Strategy housing requirement which resulted in Policy CS13 and a number of other policies being remitted for re-examination.  As a result of this the Council resolved to take the plan forward as two separate elements: Development Management Policies (Part 1) and Site Allocations (Part 2).  The Development Management Policies Plan is not dependent on the resolution of the Core Strategy remitted policies and is nearing adoption.  Now that the housing requirement has been resolved, progress can be made on the Site Allocations Plan.

The purpose of the Site Allocations Plan is to identify the detailed allocations required to deliver the North Somerset Core Strategy, consistent with government guidance. This will include a review of existing and the identification of new allocations covering, for example, residential and employment uses, as well as designations to safeguard or protect particular areas such as local green space or strategic gaps.

The Core Strategy will be reviewed by the end of 2018. Key strategic issues of housing, employment, infrastructure and any consequential changes to the Green Belt will be determined through the Joint Spatial Plan; a development plan document being prepared jointly by the West of England authorities for the period 2016-2036.  This plan is proposed to be adopted in 2018 and will provide the context for the proposed new North Somerset Local Plan and which is intended to cover the same period 2016-2036.  As the Site Allocations Plan is being prepared to implement the Core Strategy housing requirement, it is in effect a transitory plan, and its content will need to be reviewed through the new Local Plan.

Plan making progress

An earlier consultation draft of the Sites and Policies Plan was issued in February 2013. This document included both site allocations and development management policies. Because of the delay to the Core Strategy caused by the High Court challenge it was decided to split the document and proceed initially with the Sites and Policies Plan Part 1: Development Management Policies.

Now that the Core Strategy housing target has been confirmed as 20,985 dwellings 2006-2026 this allows the Council to proceed towards adopting the Sites and Policies Part 2: Site Allocations Plan. Given the passage of time and further changes required as a result of the Core Strategy decision, a further period of consultation is necessary prior to the plan being finalised and eventually submitted to the Secretary of State for examination. The table below sets out the various stages leading up to adoption

After the close of consultation, all representations received (both supporting and objecting to the Site Allocations Plan), will be summarised in a Consultation Report and an assessment taken on representations received and consideration of any amendments required. A revised plan will then be prepared. This is the Publication Version and will be the plan that the Council intends to submit to the Secretary of State for examination. This will be consulted upon and all comments received forwarded for consideration at the independent examination.

The plan then moves into the examination phase. An inspector will undertake the examination and hold hearings as appropriate before submitting recommendations to the Council. The Council will then proceed to adoption.

Stage

Date

Event

Plan-preparation

February-April 2013

6 weeks consultation on Consultation Draft.

 March- April   2016

6 weeks further consultation on the Consultation Draft CURRENT STAGE

April – June 2016

Assessment of responses; Consultation Report preparation of revised document.

Sept 2016

Consultation on Publication Version

Examination

Nov 2016

Submission to Secretary of State .

Jan 2017

Examination conducted by independent Inspector including hearings

March 2017

Inspector’s report issued.

Adoption

April 2017

Formal adoption by the Council.

Proposals Map

Adoption of the Site Allocations Plan will result in changes to the Proposals Map. If you want to make a comment on a specific site you can submit a comment on the relevant schedule within this online document.

If you have a general comment about a town or village then please comment here.

If you wish to put forward a site for development then please comment here.