Local Plan Part 2

Latest News

Wednesday 17 July

The Inspectors Post Hearing Letter  was published today.

Thursday 20 June

Close of Hearings

The hearings for today have closed, see:

Wednesday 19 June

Note of Local Plan Hearings Wednesday 19 June 2019

This is the Council’s record of today’s discussions, and in no way represents the views of the Independent Inspector.

Today was the best attended day of the Hearings so far, and the atmosphere in the Council Chamber was tense at times. Discussion about the relative merits of extra sites, as well as how the policies themselves would work, was detailed and conducted with considerable energy at times.

The afternoon session had its own energy moments, as participants debated the details of the Towcester North employment land allocations, and their role in delivering much-needed new facilities for the very successful Towcester Town Football Club. We heard from the football authorities about how grass roots sport is funded, and everyone learned something new. It was pleasing that Statements of Common Ground were able to be put before the Inspector, to demonstrate delivery and cooperation of one of the proposed allocated sites. This should give everyone confidence that the site can come forward and provide more high quality new jobs to local people. 

Tomorrow is the final day of Hearings, when we will discuss the infrastructure proposals, and the arrangements for monitoring delivery of the new developments that are set out in the plan. The Inspector will then close the Hearings. It is therefore your last chance to observe local plan hearings in South Northamptonshire, possibly ever, at 10:00am Thursday 20 June.

Tuesday 18 June 2019

Note of Local Plan Hearings, 18 June 2019

This is the Council’s record of today’s discussions, and in no way represents the views of the Independent Inspector. 

Tuesday morning of the second week of Hearings started with a lively debate about the use of Health Impact Assessments when determining planning applications.

Discussions then moved on to a number of discussions about how nature and new development co-exist, specifically with reference to the Upper Nene Gravel Pits Special Protection Area. This is home to the beautiful Golden Plover, and is a very important habitat. We also investigated the plan’s approach to special landscape areas, green infrastructure corridors, biodiversity and geodiversity, Sites of Special Scientific Interest, and the Nature Improvement Area. Overall, this was an interesting morning and participants grappled with the issues with enthusiasm.

After lunch, the much-anticipated discussion about Local Green Space designation was held. This was followed by a debate about the policies relating to development within back gardens. 

Wednesday’s agenda is all about the employment policies, and site allocations

New document uploaded

A new document has been added for the Examination in the Other documents area OTH/01 Appeal Decision submitted by AR Group for Chartwell Industries.

Friday 14 June 2019

Note of Local Plan Hearings, 13 June 2019

This is the Council’s record of today’s discussions, and in no way represents the views of the Independent Inspector.

The Hearings throughout Thursday centred on the detailed housing policies, including the requirement for a proportion of new homes to be bungalows and to meet accessibility standards.

After lunch, there was a specific discussion about how the specific housing needs of Gypsies, Travellers and Travelling Showpeople will be met.

That concluded the first week of local plan hearings. We are due back on Tuesday 18, at 10:00am in the Council Chamber at the Forum, when hearings will resume.

Matters to be considered on 18th June are:

  • Health Impacts of new development
  • Landscape and natural environment
  • Local Green Spaces.

Members of the public are able to observe the hearings, and ample free parking is available nearby.

Thursday 13 June 2019

Brownfield Land Register added to Examination Library

Hearing Programme for week commencing 17 June 2019 added to Examination Library

Please note that all items in the afternoon session on Thursday 20 June have now been brought forward to the morning session.

Wednesday 12 June 2019

Note of Local Plan Hearings, 12 June 2019

This is the Council’s record of today’s discussions, and in no way represents the views of the Independent Inspector.

The Hearings throughout Tuesday centred on the Part 2 plan’s strategy, and the morning’s detailed discussions were around the settlement hierarchy and the settlement confines. These two issues guide limited new development across the majority of the district, to meet local needs.

After lunch, there was a wider discussion about whether and to what extent the Part 2 plan should address the under delivery of new homes to meet Northampton’s need as set out in the adopted West Northamptonshire Joint Core Strategy.

Following resumption of the Hearings tomorrow morning, the following topics will be discussed:

More on the housing policies, to meet local needs before lunch; and the Meeting housing needs of Gypsies, Travellers, and Travelling Showpeople.

Tuesday 11 June 2019

Note of Local Plan Hearings, 11 June 2019

This is the Council’s record of today’s discussions, and in no way represents the views of the Independent Inspector.

The morning of Tuesday 11th June saw the long-awaited opening of the Hearings to test the South Northamptonshire Part 2 Local Plan. The Inspector formally opened proceedings, and chaired the day’s Hearings. The Council spoke first, to outline the purpose of the plan, and to summarise the key issues that have been raised and are due to be discussed during the next two weeks.

The topic of the first Hearing was legal compliance. The fundamental questions the Council had to answer concerned whether it had followed the legal requirements when preparing the plan. Discussions centred on technical matters such as the Sustainability Appraisal, and concluded before a well earned lunch break.

After lunch, there was a focussed discussion about how the Part 2 plan fits together with the adopted West Northamptonshire Joint Core Strategy. The issue of most interest was the housing strategy, and a number of issues related to housing are due to be considered by subsequent Hearings.

The final hearing of the day concerned design, heritage and conservation, and investigated the extent to which the plan is consistent with the Government’s National Planning Policy Framework as far as design, heritage and conservation are concerned. The Hearings were then adjourned.

Following resumption of the Hearings tomorrow morning, at 10 o’clock sharp, the following topics will be discussed:

  • The settlement hierarchy
  • The settlement confines and
  • Housing policy to meet the needs of Gypsies and Travellers

Monday 10 June 2019

Updated Hearing Programme and modifications added to the Examination Library

An updated Hearing Programme has now been published.

Friday 7 June 2019

Updated version of Matter 1 Written Statement

An updated version of Matter 1 Written Statement has now been published.

Thursday 6 June 2019

Amended Hearings Programme

An amended Hearings programme with list of participants has now been published.

Tuesday 4 June 2019

Public hearings on major planning policy start next week

A public hearing on a major policy document that will affect all planning decisions in South Northamptonshire, is set to start next week.

The hearing is the penultimate stage in the development of the South Northants Local Plan Part 2, which allocates land for development, areas to be protected from development and the policies used to determine planning applications in those areas.

A planning inspector has already laid out areas of the draft plan which he believes require further discussion and during the hearing he will listen to statements from a range of interested parties.

While members of the public are welcome to observe, only those who have taken part in previous stages of the Local Plan Part 2 and who have registered to speak, may do so.

The hearing starts at 10:00am on Tuesday, 11 June and takes place in the Council Chamber at the SNC offices, The Forum, Moat Lane, Towcester, NN12 6AD.

The hearing is set to continue until Friday, 21 June, at which point the Planning Inspector will begin considering the statements made and will deliver his findings in due course.

Monday 29 April 2019

Questions for South Northants Local Plan hearings published

Questions a Planning Inspector has asked to test the soundness of the district’s Local Plan have been published by South Northamptonshire Council (SNC).

In January SNC submitted the Local Plan to the Planning Inspectorate and the questions, issues and matters they have raised have been published alongside the guidance notes for the public hearings set to take place in June.

The Inspector is inviting those who previously responded to public consultations on the Local Plan while it was being drafted to confirm whether they have an interest in participating during the hearings, but they must register in advance.

To speak they must contact the independent Programme Officer appointed by SNC to act as a liaison between the Inspector, public speakers and the Council.

Respondents can also submit further written statements but it is not a requirement to do so.

Additional material and requests to participate in the hearings must be sent to the Programme Officer by 12:00pm on Wednesday, 29 May 2019.

Hearing Sessions into the South Northamptonshire Local Plan will start at 10:00am on Tuesday, 11 June 2019 and take place in the Council Chamber at the SNC offices, The Forum, Moat Lane, Towcester, NN12 6AD.

SNC will respond to the Inspectors questions before the hearings and those responses will be published on the council’s website in due course.

To view the Inspectors questions and the matters he wishes to raise in the hearing: guidance notes for speakers, the hearing programme, and contacts for the Programme Officer, visit Hearing Sessions – Venue and Timetables.

Thursday 7 March 2019

Preliminary response from Inspector over Local Plan Part 2

The Planning Inspector has written to the Council to outline the preliminary matters, a response from the Council has been requested by Wednesday, 20 March 2019.

Additionally provisional dates have been agreed for the examination hearing sessions for weeks commencing Monday, 10 and Monday, 17 June 2019.

Venues and timetables will be published in due course.

The Preliminary Matters letter can be viewed at the Examination Library within Inspector’s documents.

Wednesday 13 February 2019

Local Plan Part 2 Public Examination – Inspector appointed

The Planning Inspectorate has appointed GJ Fort BA (Hons) PGDip LLM MCD MRTPI to conduct the examination into the soundness of the South Northamptonshire Local Plan Part 2.

He will determine whether the document complies with legal requirements and whether policies are ‘positively prepared, justified, effective and consistent with national policy.'

The Local Plan was formally submitted for inspection on Tuesday, 22 January 2019 and the examination will include a series of public hearings which are expected to start taking place towards the end of spring this year. 

Thursday 24 January 2019

Final stage for plan to protect and grow South Northamptonshire

A major new policy document which will shape any changes in South Northamptonshire for years to come has been sent to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government.

Five years in the making and after five public consultations, the South Northamptonshire Council (SNC) Local Plan Part 2 follows on from the West Northants Joint Core Strategy and adds detailed planning policies which are specific to the district.

If accepted, the Local Plan Part 2 will sit alongside other planning policies to form the basis through which planning decisions are made.

Cllr Roger Clarke, SNC’s portfolio holder for Planning, said: "With its two successful market towns of Brackley and Towcester, the dynamic Silverstone circuit which supports the High Performance Technology and Motorsport Engineering sector, this is an economically successful place.

"We are also blessed with wonderful landscapes and villages, many of which contain conservation areas and reflect the history and heritage that is the foundation of the District.

"This makes South Northamptonshire a great place to live. Work and take leisure.

"The Local Plan embraces that backdrop and seeks to ensure all new development is good development, in the right locations to support growth and enhance the quality of life that our residents and businesses expect and deserve."

Creation of the Local Plan has included a review of which settlements are the most sustainable and capable of serving more homes and a review of village confines and where open countryside starts.

The Local Plan also sets out a series of new policies to guide the construction of all types of housing, such as starter homes, self-build and homes for older people to ensure greater housing choice is provided for all local residents.

The Planning Inspectorate will appoint an Inspector who will conduct the examination into the soundness of the submitted plan.

The examination will focus on the main issues that the Inspector considers are fundamental to the soundness of the plan.

It is likely that there will be a number of public Hearings including contributions from those who responded to the consultations.

Thursday 4 October 2018

Important milestone reached in Local Plan for South Northamptonshire

People and businesses with an interest in South Northamptonshire have one last chance to have their say on refreshed planning policies which will guide future development in the district.

As the local planning authority South Northamptonshire Council (SNC) must prepare and review a Local Plan which allocates land for development, areas to be protected from development and the policies used to determine planning applications in those areas.

Cllr Roger Clarke, SNC’s portfolio holder for Planning, said: “Formation of a robust set of guidelines and aspirations for developers is the very best way of making sure we never lose what makes this district special while balancing the need for progress.

“This submission draft has been years in the making and I’d like to thank everyone who took part in public consultations throughout the process. This final step pulls together those various stages and it is a chance for you to comment on the strength of our Local Plan as a whole.”

This plan is a Part 2 plan, which sits under the West Northamptonshire Joint Core Strategy which was adopted in 2014 and includes the more strategic policies and allocations.

On Wednesday, 19 September SNC’s Planning Policy and Regeneration Strategy Committee gave the go ahead to publish the submission draft of Local Plan (Part 2) for comment before it is sent to the Secretary of State for formal Examination and can be used as a framework for planning decisions.

The publicity period starts Thursday, 4 October 2018 and ends at midday on Friday, 16 November.

The submission draft and supporting documents are available online in our consultation webpages, from the SNC office at The Forum in Towcester and at libraries in: Towcester, Brackley, Roade, Deanshanger and Middleton Cheney.

This is the final opportunity to comment on the Local Plan Part 2, ahead of formal Examination which is expected to take place during spring 2019.

The Local Plan Part 2, once adopted, will replace the 1997 South Northamptonshire Local Plan.

For more information read the Procedural Practice in the Examination of Local Plans.

Alternatively you can complete a representation form and return via email to localplanconsultation@southnorthants.gov.uk or by post to:

Planning Policy Team,
South Northamptonshire Council,
The Forum, Moat Lane,
NN12 6AD.

Drop in events where people can view the consultation material and speak to planning officers will also take place on the following days:

Brackley on Monday, 15 October 2018, 3:30pm – 6:30pm, Brackley Town Hall, Market Place, Brackley, Northants, NN13 7AB
Bugbrooke on Wednesday, 17 October 2018, 3:30pm – 6:30pm at Bugbrooke Community Centre Camp Close, Bugbrooke, Northampton, NN7 3RW.
Deanshanger on Thursday, 18 October 2018, 3:30pm – 6:00pm, Deanshanger, Deanshanger Road, Old Stratford, MK19 6NL
Roade on Monday, 22 October 2018, 3:30pm – 6:00pm, Roade Village Hall, Bailey Brooks Lane, Roade, Northants, NN7 2LS
Towcester on Tuesday, 30 October 2018, 3:30pm – 6:30pm, First Floor Committee Room, South Northamptonshire Council, The Forum, Moat Lane, Towcester, Northants, NN12 6AD
Any questions please contact the planning policy team on 01327 322265.