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Progress on the Borough Plan

Published on Friday, 27th May 2016

A revised timetable for the Borough Plan will be reported to Cabinet on 15th June 2016. The report will set out the estimated timeframe for the production of the Plan, taking into account adjustments that have been necessary in order to respond to new legal issues, which are beyond the Council’s control.

At the end of last year, we consulted on a version of the Borough Plan that it would like to see adopted. Following any changes resulting from this consultation, the next step would have been to submit the document for independent examination.  However, this has not been possible due to a request that has been made of Nuneaton and Bedworth to accommodate additional growth, to ensure that the overall needs of the region can be met. This is a result of there being insufficient land to meet objectively assessed need elsewhere within the region and, under our ‘duty to co-operate’, we must consider the request, assisting if possible. Some other neighbouring authorities are in a similar position.

As a consequence, we are required to review the evidence base which informs the planning decisions the Council makes and this process will take time. Once the evidence is reviewed, the Plan will be amended and consultation will take place on the changes later in the year. The Plan will then be submitted to the Planning Inspectorate for an independent examination.

Cllr Danny Aldington, Portfolio Holder for Planning and Development said:

‘We’ve had to revise the timetable we had in mind for the production of the Borough Plan in order to comply with our statutory obligations. The delay is beyond our control and affects some neighbouring authorities too.

The legal position is crystal clear; because housing needs in other parts of the region cannot be accommodated, we are legally obliged to review our own position and assist if we can. Effectively, this means that we have no choice but to review our evidence base; as a formal request has been made, we have a statutory duty to comply with it, as do other neighbouring authorities.

Once finalised, our Plan will map out development in the Borough for decades to come and it’s absolutely crucial that we get it right. The process takes time and we need to invest sufficient resource to make sure that our evidence base is accurate and that any new issues are thoroughly investigated.

We will make sure that our Borough Plan is robust and reflects local opinions. It’s one of our top priorities; we’re making really good progress and giving it the time and focus it properly deserves.’