The previous local planning system has been replaced by the Local Development Framework (LDF). Each district has to prepare a number of documents that make up the LDF with the most important being the Core Strategy.
The Reigate and Banstead Council prepared a draft Core Strategy in 2009 which covered the spatial strategy for development in the district until 2026. It has to comply with the requirements of the South East Plan which set an allocation of 10,000 dwellings to be constructed in the district in the 20 year period from 2006.
In November 2009 the appointed Inspector reviewed the Core Strategy to test its soundness by holding a pre-enquiry meeting at which he set out the main issues he wished to concentrate on at the Examination in Public (EIP). This EIP took place in January and February this year. The Banstead Federation of Residents’ Associations and the CPRE gave evidence generally supporting the Council’s case. The Inspector’s main concern was whether the required 10,000 dwellings could be constructed without encroaching into the Green Belt. The Council provided detailed information on where housing could be accommodated (mainly in Redhill and to the north of Horley) but a number of the sites were queried by developers and landowners, both into the timing and number of units that could be accommodated.
It now appears that the Inspector has found the Plan to be “unsound” and his decision is binding. As a result of a letter from the Secretary of State dated 25 March 2010 the Council was directed to withdraw the Core Strategy under Section 22 (2) (b) of the Planning & Compulsory Purchase Act 2004,
The Council will now be publishing a revised Local Development Scheme shortly and updating evidence to support a revised Core Strategy. The revised Core Strategy is expected to be published for public consultation soon and it is very likely that a Green Belt review will also be required.
For the latest developments follow this link:
Planning/Planning Policies/Local Development Framework/Core Strategy.
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