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07/08/2017

Gwynedd and Anglesey joint plan approved

Words: Laura Edgar
Bangor / iStock-639694432

Councillors at Gwynedd and the Isle of Anglesey councils have agreed a joint local development plan outlining a new planning policy for future land use and development for the period 2011-2026.

The two councils have been working together for six years to prepare the joint plan.

In July, independent planning inspectors endorsed the plan, which doesn’t include the parts of Gwynedd inside the Snowdonia National Park.

The plan features proposals for 7,184 new homes across Gwynedd and Anglesey, with the inspector stating that the allocated sites and the identified windfall potential are “realistic and appropriate” with the level of contingency “adequate to reflect the deliverability concerns”.

Gwynedd Council approved the plan with the chairman’s casting vote after a deadlock of 30 votes apiece.

According to the Daily Post, Welsh language activists urged Anglesey councillors, who voted a few days after those in Gwynedd, to reject the plan because of concerns over the impact that the new housing might have on the language in the two counties.

Anglesey councillors voted by 21 votes to five in favour of the joint plan. Llinos Medi, leader of Anglesey Council, said: “We must be prepared for significant changes in the local economy and providing land to create new jobs and affordable homes for our young people, in the right places, is vital. [The plan] will help realise our aim of creating strong and sustainable local communities and help protect the Welsh language.”

Dyfrig Siencyn, leader of Gwynedd Council, said the plan is based on “comprehensive” evidence regarding the matters most important for local people - housing, including affordable housing, jobs and the Welsh language.

“The framework sets out a series of progressive policies that will ensure that housing developments meet local needs, protect our communities and enable them to thrive.

“Crucially, in some coastal communities where the price of most houses are beyond the reach of local people, it includes an innovative local housing market policy – the first of its kind in Wales – which will ensure that any new homes are based on local needs.”

Siencyn said the challenge is to use the planning framework to ensure that local developments are sustainable linguistically, socially and environmentally while providing high-quality homes needed for people in Gwynedd.

The planning inspectorate report can be found on Anglesey Council's website (pdf).

Image credit | iStock

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