Issue - meetings

Wiltshire Local Plan Review Update

Meeting: 29/06/2021 - Cabinet (Item 15)

15 Wiltshire Local Plan Review Update

      Report of the Chief Executive


Supporting documents:


Cllr Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Development Management, Strategic Planning and Climate Change presented the report which provided an update on the Wiltshire Local Plan Review following the recent consultation. In introducing the report, he acknowledged that (given the questions and statements made) there appeared to be some misunderstanding about the purpose of the report and explained that no decisions were being made at the meeting about policies for the draft plan but on further evidence that would be needed, which we shouldn’t prejudge the outcome of. It is an update report that sets out an initial summary of the main issues from people responding to the consultation. He explained that the Council had a legal duty to prepare the plan and despite the pandemic it was important to continue with the consultation following Government guidance.   


The Cabinet noted that following their approval on 1 December 2020, consultation was undertaken on the Wiltshire Local Plan Review between 13 January 2021 and 9 March 2021. The report provided an initial summary of the main issues that were raised through the consultation and the next steps. It was felt that the consultation was a success due to the numbers of responses and comments received, especially during the time of the pandemic. 

The report highlighted that development needs must be planned for positively, and that difficult choices will need to be made. Concerns noted from local communities centred around environmental issues, ability for infrastructure to cope (particularly health, education and transportation) and the view that while significant housing has taken place this has not been matched with new jobs. An understanding of the issues and concerns are an important part of the work going forward, and these would need to be considered alongside the development of new evidence to inform policies within the draft Plan.


The Cabinet were informed that it is good practice to update the evidence base for a Local Plan throughout the plan’s preparation, and there was a need for further technical evidence on a range of issues, and these were detailed in the report.


Following some concerns from the public about timescales and process, the Leader explained that, as indicated above, Cabinet considered a report on the progression of the Local Plan in December 2020, at which point it was agreed to go out to consultation on the key component to inform the Local Plan and a report would be brought back to Cabinet following the consultation which ended in March. Since that consultation has closed and responses digested, the Council had advertised that it would be bringing an update on the Local Plan Review to Cabinet on its Forward Work Plan which was published on 28th May.


The deadline for Cabinet questions has not changed. Whilst late questions will be accepted, the deadline is there to allow time for responses to be prepared; where questions are submitted later, this may mean a response cannot be provided ahead of the meeting.  If Cabinet agreed the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15