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Plans in place for next steps in Local Plan

The timeline for putting together one of the borough’s most important planning documents has been agreed as Test Valley Borough Council gears up for public consultation early next year.

The Local Plan sets out the policies and guidelines for planning up and down the borough, and helps to look after the environment while making provision for the facilities and services that the community needs.

Now, the next step in putting this plan together has been agreed, with a timeline now in place for the council to follow, and to consult with the public.

An updated Local Development Scheme has been approved by the authority’s cabinet which outlines the timeline, with this next stage being undertaken in two stages.

Early next year, the public will be asked to have their say on the Local Plan’s vision and objectives, housing and economic needs and how it supports our town centres, delivering masterplans for both Andover and Romsey.

Other areas for consideration include the overall scale and broad strategy for the distribution of growth and the delivery of sustainability and design.

Then, later in 2022, a consultation will be launched with the public on the full draft plan which will have taken into account the first stage’s responses. Settlement boundaries and site allocations for housing and commercial development will also be open for discussion during this phase.

Deputy leader, councillor Nick Adams-King, said: “I know that planning and its policies can be a complex system and often the first interaction around planning policy that residents can have is when they hear of an application.

“We would love residents to get involved now, and tell us their opinions about all things to do with how we should shape our communities going forward. I made a commitment that our Local Plan consultation would be as accessible and wide ranging as possible, a two-stage approach means we can lead on evidence, while ensuring the public’s view is incorporated at every turn.”