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Consultation on Borough Plan modifications approved

Published on Thursday, 26th July 2018

On Wednesday 25th July NBBC approved consultation on the main modifications to the Borough Plan, following advice from the Inspector carrying out the Plan’s examination.

In line with the Council’s Statement of Community Involvement the consultation will last for eight weeks, which is two weeks longer than the legal requirement. Consultation will start once the Inspector has reviewed the Sustainability Appraisal, which is a report assessing the modifications against sustainability criteria. Once the consultation starts, the modifications will be available to view on the Council’s website at www.nuneatonandbedworth.gov.uk/consult, as well as upon request at the Town Hall and Bedworth Area Offices.

The Council will be consulting with specific bodies set out in regulations such as Highways England on the strategic road network, NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups on health provision such as GP services and Warwickshire County Council’s Education Department on school provision, as well as residents and businesses. People who commented on the plan during the last consultation will be notified directly about this consultation, however comments will be welcome from anyone who has a view to express about the main modifications. Commencement of the consultation will be announced through a press release and social media, the above link should be checked regularly by those wishing to participate.

All previous representations on the plan as a whole have been reviewed by the Inspector, and following the hearing sessions earlier in the year the Inspector has recommended some main modifications to the Plan. The Inspector has made it clear that the forthcoming consultation is in regard to the proposed main modifications only, and no other aspects of the Plan. For example, if the main modifications do not change a land allocation then comments on that land allocation are not a matter for this consultation, as those comments have already been considered.  If further comments are submitted on any aspects unrelated to the main modifications, the Inspector cannot consider them. The Council is organising the consultation on behalf of the Inspector, and it is the Inspector rather than the Council who will consider the comments.

To help respondents identify which modifications they wish to comment on, the Council have provided references for each modification, as well as a representation form which can be used to provide all of the relevant information the Inspector needs to review the comments. This form will be found on the Council’s website once the consultation starts.

The notable changes to the Borough Plan include an increase in the number of houses the Plan will deliver, up from 13,374 to 14,060, which is as a result of developers gaining planning permission for more houses on the strategic housing site in the north of Nuneaton than had been anticipated when the Plan was last published. The Plan will also now include concept plans for the strategic housing sites in the north of Nuneaton, Arbury and Woodlands, setting out spine roads, cycle and walking routes, as well as school locations, helping to manage traffic in these areas more effectively, as well as distributing education provision throughout the sites.

One major change being made is the removal of part of the School Lane housing site, which will now be retained in the Green Belt at the land owner’s request, after having previously been promoted to the council. Conversely, 5.3 hectares of land is being added to the Plan for employment as an extension to Prologis Park after biodiversity concerns were resolved.

Cllr Neil Phillips (Planning and Development) said:

“Our Plan provides a blueprint for planning homes, jobs and leisure opportunities within the Borough. This is a major document and we have worked hard to get it right.

“I am delighted that the Plan has now reached this stage and that we’re ready to consult on the main modifications proposed by the Inspector.”