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Further consultation on draft local plan to be discussed at cabinet

Published Thursday 9 September, 2021
Last updated on Thursday 9 September, 2021

Swale Borough Council’s cabinet will be asked to approve plans for further consultation on the council’s draft local plan after a meeting last night.

The Government’s National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) was revised in July and these changes are not considered in the current draft plan.

The effects of the pandemic are also becoming clearer, with the potential impact on certain employment sectors, the office market, and particularly the retail and leisure sectors.

To take this into account, the council’s Local Plan Panel were last night (Wednesday, 8 September) asked to approve plans to carry out additional consultation to reflect changes since the local plan process began.

Cllr Mike Baldock, deputy leader of the council and cabinet member for planning, said:

“We have already consulted widely on the draft plan and the policies it contains, but recent changes in the NPPF and the impact of the pandemic on key sectors means we think the plan will be stronger for taking these into account through further consultation.

“If cabinet agrees, the next step will be to carry out an issues and options consultation that takes all these into account.

“It’s also a chance to proactively respond to comments already made on earlier versions of the plan and encourage more people to take part.”

If agreed, the consultation will take place in late October for four weeks and will ask a series of questions about how to best meet the development needs of the borough.

Anyone who has already responded to previous consultations on the local plan will be notified of the consultation when it is launched, and replies will be able to be submitted online, via email or by post.