The council is currently preparing a Local Plan update which will set a framework for future development across the borough to at least 2039. A general ‘Call for sites’ with future development potential was completed in Summer 2019.
The council then undertook a second ‘Call for Sites’ focusing on ‘green’ uses and land for Gypsy and Traveller pitches. This second call for sites invited interested parties such as landowners, community groups and site promoters to come forward with land opportunities, sites or projects that could meet wider borough needs for the following uses:
Provision of these types of sites is important to help ensure that the Local Plan update delivers a sustainable strategy that reflects not only the government’s commitment to the environment (including building back greener following the COVID19 pandemic) and tackling the inequalities faced by Gypsy and Travellers, but also the council’s own ambitions for responding to the climate emergency, protecting and enhancing our environment, and ensuring the needs of all of our community are met.
The council declared a climate emergency in 2019 and adopted a Climate Change and Air Quality Strategy in 2021. This strategy identifies a series of actions required to address climate change at a local level, including the need to maximise the climate mitigation and adaption qualities of the natural environment. The identification of ‘green sites’ will support the delivery of the council’s strategy, and the Government’s environmental goals set out in the Environment Bill and the 25 Year Environmental Plan.
Details of sites submitted will be used to inform the Local Plan update. Those sites relating to gypsy and traveller pitches will be added to the Strategic Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (SHELAA) which is available to view on the SHELAA webpage.
Any ‘green’ sites which were submitted for environmental and climate change purposes will then be considered through updates to other evidence base documents, to inform the Local Plan update.
Planning Policy Team
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