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01/11/2018

Staffordshire councils delay joint plan consultation

Words: Laura Edgar
Newcastle-under-Lyme / Derek Harper

Potential changes to the government's standard methodology for calculating housing need mean two Staffordshire councils have delayed consultation on their draft joint local plan.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council said they need more time to consider the implications of the new standard methodology for assessing housing need, which was introduced in the revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) in July.

Last week, the government said local planning departments should use household projections from 2014 when assessing housing need, rather than 2016 figures. The government is consulting on proposals until 7 December.

The councils said: “In order to assure the Joint Local Plan is sound and robust, further work now needs to be undertaken. It is vital that we consider the housing need and supply issues in light of the policy changes before confirming proposed sites in the city and borough.

“Other areas – such as the Greater Manchester Combined Authority – have taken the same decision over their local plan process.”

Stoke and Newcastle confirmed they are committed to continuing to work together on the joint plans. Work will continue on all other aspects of the plan, with the government aware of the timetable. The housing need figure will be decided after the government’s consultation

Braintree District Council and Fareham Borough Council have also expressed concerns.

Image credit | Derek Harper

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