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Local Plan

Overview

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What is a Local Plan

A Local Plan sets out a vision and a framework for the future development of an area. It is drawn up by a Local Planning Authority in consultation with its community, providing a platform for local people to shape their future surroundings. It will look at, and define, how development including housing, business construction and infrastructure (roads and facilities, for example) can best benefit the area a council is responsible for. 

In England, the 'plan-led' approach to the regulation of land and development, places Local Plans at the heart of the town and country planning system. Under this system, Local Plans form part of the statutory 'development plan' for an area, setting out planning policies and proposals for new development, and serving as the starting point for determining local planning applications.

Why we need a Local Plan

If we do not have a Local Plan, development will still take place but, without our own planning policies, we will be less able to ensure the schools, open spaces, and road upgrades that are needed to support development are part of the planning approval process.

Have your say

Following a series of consultations, informing a review of the Local Plan, a draft version is now moving to a final public pre-submission consultation this autumn. This is running from Wednesday 27 September, to Wednesday 22 November. See our current consultation page to find out how you can have your say on the draft Local Plan.

Regulation 19 consultation autumn 2023

Wiltshire's Local Plan

In Wiltshire, our current Local Plan is the Wiltshire Core Strategy (WCS), adopted in 2015. This incorporates Saved policies from former District Local Plans, that were not replaced by the WCS, and will continue to be saved until replaced as part of the Local Plan Review process. It also includes the following plans and policies:

The Local Plan, together with Made plans (neighbourhood plans) form the development plan for Wiltshire.

National policy states that the planning system should be genuinely plan-led, and places a Local Planning Authorities' development plan at the heart of decision making. The Local Plan, as a key component of the development plan, will be the basis against which planning applications are determined and neighbourhood plans developed. It is a legally required document containing planning policies and site allocations to deliver the Council's strategic priorities.

    The Local Plan review

    The Government requires every Local Plan to be reviewed at least once every five years. Wiltshire's Local Plan, the Wiltshire Core Strategy, was adopted in 2015, and is therefore being reviewed. This review is termed the 'Local Plan review'.  

    Regular reviews support growth, ensuring there is enough land for homes, jobs and the infrastructure necessary to support them. It also helps protect against speculative and unplanned development that might undermine sustainable and resilient communities.

    Regulation 19 consultation

    The Regulation 19 consultation took place between Wednesday 27 September, to Wednesday 22 November 2023. The draft local plan published as part of this consultation is available for download: Wiltshire Local Plan Pre-Submission Draft 2020-2038 (Regulation 19) (PDF) [44MB] (opens new window)

    Scope of the Wiltshire Local Plan review

    The Local Plan review will:

    • set-out a vision and framework for Wiltshire for the period to 2038, addressing housing needs and other economic, social, and environmental priorities
    • assess the future levels of need, and an appropriate basis, for new homes (including market, affordable, and specialist housing), employment land, and infrastructure provision over that period
    • consider if the existing adopted development strategy remains relevant, identifying new site allocations relating to housing and employment together with supporting services and infrastructure
    • inspect existing Wiltshire Core Strategy development management policies to ensure their continued consistency with national policy
    • introduce further detailed development management policies as part of a review of the saved development management policies not replaced by the Wiltshire Core Strategy
    • develop additional, locally distinctive policies, to plan positively for all town centres in Wiltshire consistent with national policy

    The Local Plan review will not:

    • change or remove strategic objectives or policies that remain in accordance with national policy and support the delivery of sustainable development
    • include the needs of Gypsies and Travellers, this has been removed from the scope of the review, and will be addressed through separate DPD. See the Gypsy and Travellers - planning page for more information

    Timeline of the Local Plan review

    The Wiltshire Local Development Scheme (LDS) sets out the Development Plan Documents (DPDs) prioritised for production by Wiltshire Council and the timetable for their preparation that will, when complete, together with other adopted documents, comprise the Development Plan for Wiltshire.

    The anticipated timeline for the progression of the Local Plan review is summarised below.

    Local Plan review, timeline
    Review stageStart dateEnd date
    Initial consultation on the scope of plan2017
    quarter 4
    N/A
    Plan preparation (evidence gathering, informal consultation, and public consultation)2018
    quarter 1
    2023
    quarter 2
    Publication of plan for pre‐submission consultation and preparation for submission following consultation2023
    quarter 3
    2024
    quarter 4
    Submission to Secretary of State2024
    quarter 4
    N/A
    Examination (including hearing, and receipt of inspector's report)2024
    quarter 4
    N/A
    AdoptionN/A2025
    quarter 3

    Regulation 19 consultation autumn 2023

    Wiltshire Local Plan Regulation 19 consultation (closed)

    Following the successful Local Plan consultation held in the autumn, we have received more than 8,000 comments from the public, Wiltshire Council members, businesses, community groups, and town and parish councils.

    We are currently working through all the submissions, and given the volume of comments, this will take some time. We would expect to publish all the comments in the coming months.

    The outcome of the consultation will be reported to Cabinet and Council prior to submission to the Secretary of State. 

    The consultation ran from Wednesday 27 September, to Wednesday 22 November. This was an opportunity for all interested parties to have their say on the proposals. This consultation represented the final stage before the Plan, its accompanying evidence, and all submitted comments are sent to a government Planning Inspector for independent examination. In accordance with the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 (legislation.gov.uk) (opens new window), the Planning Inspector will consider all comments made within the consultation period. More information on the next steps will be published in due course. 

    This webpage provides information on the consultation that was undertaken.

    Drop-in events and webinar

    As part of the consultation there were 16 drop in events at libraries and leisure centres across the county. A live webinar was also held on 10 October, a recording of which is available on our YouTube channel.

    Local Plan webinar, 10 October 2023 (youtube.com) (opens new window)

    The webinar included a question and answer session. Due to the volume of questions that were received, it was not possible for all of them to be answered during the event. We have therefore published a document containing all of the questions that were submitted, and their answers.

    Local Plan webinar, Q&A responses (OpenDocument text format) [960KB] (opens new window)

    The publication version of the Wiltshire Local Plan builds on the findings of earlier consultations, which can be found on our previous consultations page.

    How you could have your say on the Wiltshire Local Plan (the Plan)

    Online consultation portal

    Comments (known as 'representations' in this context) could be submitted online using the council's consultation portal. This was the recommended route, and the simplest, as it allowed you to comment directly on the Plan as you look through it. Access to the portal and instructions on how to use it are below.

    Consultation portal (opens new window)

    Email or post

    If you were unable to access the consultation portal, you could use this form: Wiltshire Local Plan Regulation 19 representation form (OpenDocument text format) [48KB] (opens new window) , and submit your comments via email or post.

    Email

    spatialplanningpolicy@wiltshire.gov.uk (opens new window)

    Post

    Spatial Planning
    Planning Directorate
    Wiltshire Council
    County Hall
    Bythesea Road
    Trowbridge
    Wiltshire
    BA14 8JN

    Further information on how to comment, and what to consider when making a comment, could be found within the statement of representation procedure (guidance note) (OpenDocument text format) [35KB] (opens new window) .

    All comments submitted, via the portal or otherwise, will be made publicly available. See your personal details, for information.

    View the consultation documents

    Consultation Portal

    The easiest way to view the Plan, and submit your comments directly, was on the consultation portal:

    Consultation Portal (opens new window)

    Interactive map

    You could also view the Plan on our ArcGIS mapping platform, where we created interactive maps that illustrate each of the policies, and made available a series of stories taking you through the chapters of the Wiltshire Local Plan.

    Interactive map of the Plan and its policies (arcgis.com) (opens new window) 

    PDF download

    An accessible PDF version of the Plan is also available for download: Wiltshire Local Plan Pre-Submission Draft 2020-2038 (Regulation 19) (PDF) [44MB] (opens new window)

    Hard copies of the Plan and supporting documents are available

    Hard copies of the Plan, and supporting documents, were also available to view, during the consultation period, at the council's main offices and a selection of libraries and community hubs, as detailed below. You could also request individual copies, for which printing and postage costs applied, see below for details.

    Frequently asked questions

    Contact us for more information

    If you would like any further information on the Plan, proposed submission documents, or any of the supporting documents, please contact us.

    Email:
    spatialplanningpolicy@wiltshire.gov.uk (opens new window)

    Telephone:
    01225 713223

    Post:
    Spatial Planning
    Planning Directorate
    Wiltshire Council
    County Hall
    Bythesea Road
    Trowbridge
    Wiltshire
    BA14 8JN

    Your personal details

    To ensure an effective and fair examination, it is important that the Inspector and all other participants in the examination process are able to know who has made comments (known as 'representations' in this context)on the plan. The council will therefore ensure that the names of those making representations can be made available (including publication on the council's website) and taken into account by the Inspector.

    The council therefore cannot accept anonymous representations - you must provide us with your name and contact details. Address details will not be made publicly available. All personal data will be handled in line with the council's Spatial Planning privacy notice.

    Previous consultations

    Join our mailing list

    To be kept informed at key stages of the progression of the Local Plan review, along with other planning policy notifications, you can join our planning policy mailing list.

    To join, follow the link below, fill in your personal details and tick the 'Planning policy' option from the 'topics of interest' list. The 'areas of interest' do not relate to the planning policy mailing list.

    Join our mailing list (opens new window)

    For further information on how the Spatial Planning department treat your personal information, visit our Privacy notice - Strategic Planning and Data Protection page.

    Privacy notice - Planning

    Information collected through public consultation will be processed in accordance with the data protection legislation.

    For more information on how the council uses your personal information, visit: Privacy notice - Public Protection.

    For more information on how the Spatial Planning department use your personal information, see: Privacy notice - Strategic Planning and Data Protection.

    Comments submitted as part of a consultation will be made public, but your personal data will not be published.

    Comments submitted via email or other means will be copied or scanned and uploaded to our website. Personal information other than the name of the person making the comments will be redacted, including e-mails and postal addresses. In order to enable us to do so, personal information should be clearly distinguished from the comments, preferably by use of the form provided or by use of a cover sheet. Please be aware that any personal information contained within the body of the comment, including that may be inferred, may not be redacted.

    Subject to the above, comments received:

    • will be made available for public inspection, and cannot be treated as confidential
    • will be available to view on the council's website for the duration of the Local Plan review process
    • will be used by the council to inform the review of the Wiltshire Local Plan
    • will be retained by the council until such time as the Review of the Local Plan is superseded by other Development Plan Document(s)
    • will be stored in electronic format within the council's consultation portal and servers (hard copy letters, where received, will be stored at the council's offices or secure storage facility)
    • may be forwarded to the Planning Inspectorate for consideration as part of the Local Plan review examination
    • may be summarised and presented in summary form

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