Delays of months as Local Plan evidence has to be reconsidered

By Harriet Ernstsons Tuesday 10 December 2013 Updated: 10/12 17:13

EVIDENCE used to decide the future of house building in Redditch is being reconsidered and could delay plans being submitted by months.

Officers are now reconsidering how many homes should be built within the borough before 2030 after neighbouring authorities' plans have been called into question by the Planning Inspectorate.

More information about the requirement is being gathered after an inspector examining the South Worcestershire Development Plan questioned a part of the plan’s evidence base which is also used for Redditch’s Local Plan.

Both plans refer to the Worcestershire Strategic Housing Market Assessment, prepared in 2012 for all the councils in Worcestershire to determine how many houses are needed in an area.

The additional work, which is likely to take a few months, has led to a delay in the submission of Redditch's plan - which was due to be submitted by December 31 and proposed 3,000 homes in the borough and 3,400 over the border in Bromsgrove.

Coun Greg Chance, responsible for planning on Redditch Borough Council, said: "Throughout the plan-making process we have ensured that the Local Plan is evidence-based, to give it the best possible chance of being found sound by the Planning Inspectorate.

"Events in the south of the county have suggested that to ensure our evidence is robust enough for the inspector, we should carry out some additional work before we submit the plan.

"We will be sure to keep everyone informed of progress on this. Of course if the evidence shows any significant changes then we will have to look at the Local Plan again."

Once the evidence is looked at, unless there is a significant change to requirements - in which case residents would need to be consulted again, the council will be able to submit the plan to the inspector immediately.

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