Agenda item

Submission of Wiltshire Core Strategy and Review of the Local Development Scheme

Report by the Service Director for Economy and Regeneration.


The views of the Environment Select Committee which considered the Strategy at its meeting on 11 June 2012 will be circulated to Cabinet members prior to the meeting and included with the agenda papers on the Council’s website. The latest version of the Draft Wiltshire Core Strategy has also been included on the website.


Declaration of interest


Cllr Judy Rooke declared a prejudicial interest in the item on the Submission of the Wiltshire Core Strategy and Review of Local Development Scheme as her property was close to the proposed country park and potential housing development at Rowden Park, Chippenham.



Public Participation


Cabinet received written representations on this item as follows:


Question – from Cllr Judy Rooke

Statement from Osborn Clark on behalf of Chippenham 2020

Letter from Hallam Land Management


Details of the above representations can be found on the Council’s website along with the agenda for this meeting.


Cabinet received verbal representations at the meeting on this item as follows:


Mr Owen Inskip

Mr Gary Mantle – from the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust



Cllr Fleur de Rhé Philipe, Cabinet member for Economic Development and Strategic Planning presented a report on the Wiltshire Core Strategy (Strategy) and Review of the Local Development Scheme. She also presented the Strategy document asking Cabinet to consider the outcome of the recent formal consultation exercise and to recommend the document to an extraordinary meeting of Council on 26 June for the purpose of submitting it to the Secretary of State.


Cllr de Rhé Philipe briefly summarised how the Strategy had evolved and the method of consultation. The consultation had resulted in representations from more than 430 different organisations and individuals. Collectively, more than 1,700 separate comments were made on different parts of the plan. A summary of the main points were documented in Chapter 4 of the consultation output report


In response to the consultation, a number of changes were proposed in the interests of improving clarity and understanding of the document and to update it to improve consistency with the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). A small number of changes were proposed by officers for similar reasons. A schedule of proposed changes was presented for Cabinet’s consideration. These changes were considered minor in nature and would not alter the overall substance of the Strategy, the validity of the Sustainability Appraisal or negatively affect the consistency with national policy. Their inclusion would strengthen the document without undermining its overall soundness.


Cllr Jon Hubbard, Chairman of the Environment Select Committee presented the relevant extract of the Committee’s minutes dated 11 June 2012 when it considered the Strategy. The Committee in making a number of comments, offered general endorsement of the Strategy and asked Cabinet to take into account its reservations and suggestions as referred to in the minutes. Cllr Hubbard explained the primary concerns of the Committee.

Cllr de Rhé Philipe thanked the Environment Select Committee for its consideration of the Strategy and presented a schedule of responses to the points raised by the Committee.


Cllr Hubbard also considered that representations made by Councillors given that they represented their respective communities should be made available in full rather than relying on summarised accounts. The Leader agreed that they should be circulated prior to Council.


In the debate which ensued, Councillors made general comments on the Strategy and specific points in relation to their respective divisional areas. Cllr Jonathon Seed advised that he intended to submit an amendment at Council concerning restricting the proximity of wind farms to residential areas.


There was some reservation over one of the recommendations to Council on granting delegated powers to officers to make other minor modifications to the Strategy in preparation for its submission to the Secretary of State in the interests of clarity and accuracy. Councillors were advised that this was normal practice for a document of this size and complexity and that Legal would need to be satisfied with any amendments made. To reassure Councillors, it was agreed to amend the recommendation to Council to include Cllr Hubbard in his capacity as Chairman of the Environment Select Committee (as well as leader of the Opposition) as a consultee along with the Cabinet member for Economic Development and Strategic Planning in agreeing the final document for submission.


It was noted that the recommendation to Council included specific reference to approving the Equalities Impact Assessment.


Following debate and taking into account representations received, it was


Recommended to Council:


That Council:


(i)         notes the outcome of the consultation;


(ii)        approves submission of the Wiltshire Core Strategy Pre-Submission Document, together with proposed changes (set out in Appendix 1 of the report presented) and Equalities Impact Assessment (at Appendix 4 of the report presented), to the Secretary of State for Examination;


(iii)       delegates to the Service Director, Economy and Regeneration, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Strategic Planning and the Chairman of the Environment Select Committee, authorisation: for the preparation of other minor modifications to the Core Strategy for Submission to the Secretary of State in the interests of clarity and accuracy; and to make appropriate arrangements for submission of documents to the Secretary of State and any consequential actions as directed by the Inspector relating to the Examination and


(iv)      approves the revision to the Local Development Scheme (as set out in Appendix 3).




(a)  That the following documents be circulated to all Councillors prior to the Council meeting on 26 June 2012:


  • Details of full representations made by Councillors during the consultation exercise;


  • Revised copy of the plan on page 248 of the Strategy to include the amendment proposed by Natural England (as referenced in the question from Cllr Judy Rooke);


  • Sustainability Appraisal, which had been updated to highlight new text and


  •  Details of classification of villages as referred to in Topic paper 3.


(b)  To respond to Cllr Francis Morland on whether the word ‘not’ should be included in paragraph 2.7.17 of Appendix 2.


Reasons for decisions


To ensure that progress continues to be made on preparing an up-to-date development plan for Wiltshire, in line with the timetable set out in the Council’s Local Development Scheme and statutory requirements, and to update the Local Development Scheme in the light of the need to ensure work continues on maintaining an up-to-date development plan for Wiltshire. 


Regulatory and constitutional procedures require that the policy framework of the authority be a shared matter for Cabinet and Council[1]. Cabinet’s functions set out in the constitution include proposing to Council new policies which fall within the Policy Framework as defined in paragraph 1 of Part 3 of the Constitution. In order to secure Council approval, therefore, the draft DPD has first been endorsed by Cabinet.


Supporting documents: