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New Forest Local Plan review making good progress

Following public hearings in the summer of 2019, the Council welcomes confirmation from the planning inspectors that the new Local Plan can be made 'sound' with the inclusion of some changes. These changes or 'Main Modifications' do not significantly change the Local Plan strategy for the District (outside of the National Park) and are a normal part of the plan-making process.

To quote the planning inspectors:

"We do not consider any main modifications are required to the broad spatial strategy, the overall scale of housing or employment land provision (other than a slight adjustment to fully align the housing requirement with the OAN[1] figure) or the principle of any of the strategic site allocations.  The main modifications largely relate to the detailed wording of Policies or supporting text and are necessary to ensure that the Local Plan is justified, effective and consistent with national policy."

Planning portfolio holder and deputy leader of the Council Edward Heron has made the following statement

"The Local Plan is the Council's vision and strategy for the future of this area. We have worked hard to strike the right balance between protecting our sensitive environment and the character of our area, whilst also providing the new homes, jobs and facilities that our communities need.  We are very pleased that the Local Plan has passed this significant milestone, and I would like to thank the inspectors and everyone who has participated in the process."  

The Council and the planning inspectors will now agree a timetable to make the changes to the Local Plan and publish them for six weeks' 'Main Modifications' public consultation.  It is likely that the consultation will start before Christmas 2019.   Once dates are agreed they will be published on our website.  

The inspectors will then consider the consultation feedback and issue a final written report before the new Local Plan can be adopted around Spring 2020.  Once adopted the new Local Plan becomes the statutory basis for making planning decisions in New Forest District (outside of the National Park).  Polices in the emerging Local Plan (as modified) now already have significant weight for planning decision-making. 


Published: 11 Oct 2019
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