SWDP Review Publication Consultation (Regulation 19) Now Live, 1 November 2022

From 1 November 2022 until 13 December 2022 at 23:59 we are consulting on the SWDP Review Publication Consultation (Regulation 19).

This is the last stage of public engagement before the Plan is submitted for formal examination by the Government’s Planning Inspectorate.

The SWDP Review Publication Consultation (Regulation 19) Plan represents what the South Worcestershire Councils consider to be the final version of the Plan.

View the SWDPR Publication Consultation Page

Consultation information events 

Information events are being held around the main strategic growth locations to help explain and support people wishing to learn more about these proposed developments. The dates, times and venues are set out below: 

  • Rushwick – Thursday 3rd November, 12:00 – 20:00

Rushwick Village Hall, Bransford Rd, Worcester WR2 5TA  

  • Worcestershire Parkway - Wednesday 9th November, 12:00 – 20:00

Norton Parish Hall, Wadborough Rd, Littleworth, Worcester WR5 2QB 

  • Mitton – Friday 11th November, 13:00 – 20:00

Bredon Village Hall, Main Rd, Bredon, Tewkesbury GL20 7QN  

  • Throckmorton – Monday 14th November, 13:00 – 20:00

Bishampton Village Hall, Broad Ln, Bishampton, Pershore WR10 2LY 

 

South Worcestershire Traveller and Travelling Showpeople Policy and Site Allocations Development Plan Document - Publication Consultation (Regulation) Now Live, 1 November 2022

From 1 November 2022 until 13 December 2022 at 23:59 we are consulting on the South Worcestershire Traveller and Travelling Showpeople Policy and Site Allocations DPD Publication Consultation (Regulation 19).

This is the last stage of public engagement before the DPD is submitted for formal examination by the Government’s Planning Inspectorate.

The South Worcestershire Traveller and Travelling Showpeople Policy and Site Allocations DPD Publication Consultation (Regulation 19) represents what the South Worcestershire Councils consider to be the final version of the DPD. 

South Worcestershire Traveller and Travelling Showpeople Policy - South Worcestershire Development Plan

New timetable for SWDP Review Announced, 12 July 2022

A consultation on a draft of the review of the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) will take place later this year, subject to approval by councillors.

The Regulation 19 Publication – effectively a draft of the plan before it is submitted to the Planning Inspectorate – will be published in October when it will be considered by councillors at Malvern Hills District, Worcester City and Wychavon District Councils.

If approved, the plan will go out to public consultation during November and early December. More details will be released at the time.

Following the consultation, a detailed timetable will then be drawn up to submit the plan for examination by an independent inspector and, if it passes that stage, to have it adopted.

The review of the SWDP sets out where an extra 14,000 new homes will be built across South Worcestershire by 2041, including new settlements at Worcestershire Parkway, Throckmorton and Rushwick.

The plan should have gone out to consultation this month (July) but was delayed because more work was needed on key documents relating to the infrastructure required to support the proposed new settlements.

Cllr David Harrison, Chairman of the SWDP Joint Advisory Panel, said: "Making sure there is proper infrastructure to support new housing is one of the main concerns of residents. That's why it was correct we took the time to get this key piece of work right. Now that's nearing completion, we can move forward and intend to put the plan out for public consultation later this year, subject to the approval of the three councils." 

Delay to SWDP publication, 22 April 2022

The updated South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) will not be published for consultation in July as scheduled, because work on the key documents relating to development sites and the infrastructure needed to support them is yet to be completed.

More time is required to finalise the Infrastructure Delivery Plan (IDP) which is a crucial evidence document setting out how strategic infrastructure, such as roads and new schools, will be delivered to support proposals in the SWDP for the additional 14,000 new dwellings that we are required to deliver across Malvern Hills District, Worcester City and Wychavon District by 2041.

The Regulation 19 publication draft of the SWDP was scheduled for public consultation in July, with the Submission version timetabled for independent examination later this year.

The impact of the latest delay to the SWDP is still being assessed and a new timetable will be drawn up for elected Councillors to consider.

Cllr, Aaron Powell, Chair of the SWDP Joint Advisory Panel, said: “We know that infrastructure and how it will be delivered is one of the key concerns of our residents. We are disappointed by this latest delay to the review of the SWDP but the Infrastructure Delivery Plan is a critical piece of evidence, to demonstrate the proposed strategic housing sites are viable. It is therefore better that we take the time now to make sure we are getting it right as we look to deliver a Plan that will have a profound impact on South Worcestershire over the coming years.

“We will identify the next steps in the review process and a timetable for them as soon as we can.”

Latest South Worcestershire Five Year Housing Land Supply Report  Published, 1 April 2021

This report provides a full explanation of the Five Year Housing Land Supply (5YHLS) calculation for the South Worcestershire Councils as required by the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). It sets out the housing requirement, delivery to-date and identifies deliverable housing sites for the next five years to 31 March 2026. The report includes an appropriate in depth analysis of sites with planning permission and those that are allocations in the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) to provide additional evidence about deliverability and to ensure that the supply calculation is robust. 

To read the full report and accompanying appendices, please click here.

Updated Local Development Scheme Published, 1 March 2022

The three South Worcestershire Councils have updated their Local Development Scheme (LDS), reflecting an update to the timetable for the production of the Traveller and Travelling Showpeople Development Plan Document and other minor amendments. The latest version was adopted at Council meetings held on 22 February 2022 (Malvern Hills District Council and Worcester City Council) and 23 February 2022 (Wychavon District Council). The LDS is a project management document which sets out the council priorities for producing planning policy documents over the coming three years. 

Read Local Development Scheme

SWDP Review Timetable Updated, 1 October 2021

The three South Worcestershire Councils have updated their Local Development Schemes (LDS). The latest versions were adopted at Council meetings held on 21 September 2021 (Worcester City Council), 22 September 2021 (Wychavon District Council) and 28 September 2021 (Malvern Hills District Council). The LDS is a project management document which sets out the council priorities for producing planning policy documents over the coming three years.

The new timetable for the SWDP Review is as follows:

Publication Consultation (Regulation 19) July-August 2022

Submission (Regulation 22) November 2022

Independent Examination (Regulation 24) February-May 2023

Receipt of Inspector’s Report (Regulation 25) August 2023

Adoption (Regulation 26) October 2023

Local Development Schemes

Further delay to the SWDP Review, 23 July 2021

The review of the South Worcestershire Development Plan has been delayed again.

The decision is to give more time for vital technical studies to be completed.

It means the plan now won’t be published in October 2021 ready for public consultation and submission for independent examination in February 2022.

A new timetable is being drawn up for the publication and submission of the plan. This will be put before Malvern Hills District, Worcester City and Wychavon District Councils for approval in the near future.

Cllr Tony Rowley, Chair of the SWDP Joint Advisory Panel, said: “It is disappointing we have had to delay the review again but completing the technical studies is important to provide the evidence base to make sure we have a robust and sound plan.

“We will make sure this work is carried out and a new timetable published as soon as possible.”

The revised SWDP, sets out how a Government requirement to build another 14,000 new homes across Malvern Hills District, Worcester City and Wychavon by 2041 will be met. This is on top of the need for 28,400 new homes by 2030, more than half of which have already been built, set out in the current plan.

Traveller and Travelling Showpeople DPD Revised Preferred Options Consultation, 17 May 2021

The South Worcestershire Councils (Malvern Hills, Worcester and Wychavon) are preparing a Travellers and Travelling Showpeople Site Allocations Development Plan Document which will set out the requirement for the number of pitches and plots to be provided to meet the needs of Travellers and Travelling Showpeople in south Worcestershire over the coming years.

The final Development Plan Document (DPD) will allocate new sites or extensions / intensifications to existing Travellers and Travelling Showpeople sites and will become part of the Development Plan for the South Worcestershire Councils (SWCs).

The Travellers and Travelling Showpeople Site Allocations Development Plan Document (TTS DPD) allocates sites to meet the need as identified in the Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment (GTAA, October 2019). 

The TTS DPD is informed by a Sustainability Appraisal (SA) which will contribute to the evidence base with the aim of delivering sustainable development.

For the purposes of this consultation an Interim Sustainability Appraisal has been prepared to set out the assessment of the strategic options and sites. A full Sustainability Appraisal Report will be published alongside the Publication version of the Plan.

Traveller and Travelling Showpeople Site Allocations DPD Revised Preferred Options

2020 South Worcestershire Authorities Monitoring Report Published, 31 March 2021

The South Worcestershire Councils (SWCs) have published the latest Authorities Monitoring Report (AMR). The AMR monitors the policies of the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) which was adopted on 25th February 2016. This is the third AMR which reports against the SWDP, covering the period between 1st April 2019 and 31st March 2020. It includes, amongst other things, information on housing completions, and progress on the development of allocated sites. It also monitors progress on associated local development documents e.g. Supplementary Planning Documents and Neighbourhood Plans. 

Read Monitoring Reports

SWDP Review Further Regulation 18 (III) Sustainability Appraisal Consultation, 1 March 2021

The South Worcestershire Councils (SWCs) i.e. Malvern Hills, Worcester City and Wychavon started a review of the SWDP in late 2017. This is in line with Government requirements that local plans should be updated every five years. The review of the SWDP will address development needs for the period 2021-2041.

Since the completion of the SWDPR Preferred Options consultation in December 2019, work has been progressing on the Publication version of the SWDPR (Regulation 19). However, the review of the SWDP has been delayed due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and our ability to collect evidence. The intention was for the next Regulation 19 stage of the consultation on the SWDP Review to be undertaken in the autumn of 2020. However, lockdown restrictions have made it much more difficult to complete several technical assessments and evidence gathering needed to support the plan within the timeframe. Further, in updating the evidence base, legal advice from Counsel recommended that an additional round of consultation is factored into the SWDPR timetable prior to Submission of the plan for Examination to allow for updates relating to the Sustainability Appraisal to be made available for consultation.

Accordingly, an updated Local Development Scheme (LDS) for 2020-2023 was approved by each local authority in September 2020 (effective from 1st October 2020). The 2020-2023 LDS includes an updated SWDPR timetable, which has moved back the Publication version of the plan to October/November 2021. This allows for additional time to finalise the technical evidence base updates and also to include an additional further Regulation 18 (III) consultation to provide greater clarification and updates to elements of the Sustainability Appraisal evidence base work.

The Sustainability Appraisal is an on-going process which tests the plan’s sites and policies against a Sustainability Framework, with a report published at each stage of the plan-making process. The Regulation 18 (III) Sustainability Appraisal update will provide information to help clarify the report published during the previous Regulation 18 (II) Preferred Options consultation carried out in November/December 2019.

The Sustainability Appraisal (SA) report is a UK-specific procedure that examines the social, economic and environmental sustainability of the sites and policies of a Local Plan in detail and proposes mitigation measures to overcome any negative impacts identified.

A key purpose of the Sustainability Appraisal is to facilitate the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) Directive’s required levels of environmental assessment, resulting in an integrated approach (the SEA Directive was transposed into English law by The Environmental Assessment of Plans and Programmes Regulations 2004 (SEA Regulations)). This includes transparency, by sharing assessment information and plan-making detail with a public audience, which provides the opportunity to influence the Local Plan.

In line with the Planning Policy Guidance and requirements of the SEA Directive, there is a need to provide a clear and transparent process of identifying, describing and evaluating reasonable alternatives (Article 5(1) of the SEA Directive). This should be the case for any type of reasonable alternative raised through the plan making process.

Accordingly, the Sustainability Appraisal will provide updates to the following sections of the SWDPR (as was submitted at the 2019 Preferred Options Regulation 18 (II) stage), as relates to the analysis of, and reasoning for, the selection and rejection of reasonable alternatives:

  • draft SWDPR policies;
  • proposed strategic location sites and reasonable alternatives;
  • proposed site allocations and reasonable alternatives; and
  • proposed SWDP reallocation sites.

A full Sustainability Appraisal (Environmental Report) will be produced for the Regulation 19 stage of the plan making process. This version of the appraisal will assess the sustainability of the proposed submission version of the SWDP.

The public consultation will run for seven weeks from Monday 1 March to Monday 19 April 2021.

This Regulation 18 (III) consultation is focused on the Sustainability Appraisal and will be technical in nature:

  • The consultation is not seeking views on an updated version of the SWDP.
  • This stage is not a further opportunity to make comments on proposed site allocations or policies published in the SWDP Review Preferred Options (2019); any such comments will not be considered.

Therefore, the material published for this consultation only relates to updates to the Sustainability Appraisal evidence base.

Following this consultation, the Publication version of the SWDP Review will then be published for a further round of consultation in October/November 2021. It will then be submitted to the Planning Inspectorate in early 2022, and subject to the Planning Inspectorates timetable, Examined over the course of 2022. The Inspector’s report is expected late 2022 with the aim to readopt the reviewed SWDP by April 2023.

SWDP Review Further Regulation 18 (III) Sustainability Appraisal Consultation

South Worcestershire Councils Response to the Planning for the Future White Paper Consultation, 29 October 2020

The South Worcestershire Councils have published their response to the Planning for the Future White Paper Consultation.

pdf SWCs Response to the Planning for the Future White Paper Consultation (347 KB)

SWDP Review Timetable Updated, 6 October 2020

The three South Worcestershire Councils have updated their Local Development Schemes (LDS). The latest versions were adopted at Council meetings held on 16 September 2020 (Wychavon District Council), 29 September 2020 (Malvern Hills District Council) and 30 September 2020 (Worcester City Council).  The LDS is a project management document which sets out the council priorities for producing planning policy documents over the coming three years.

The new timetable for the SWDP Review is as follows:

Additional Preferred Options (Focused on Sustainability Appraisal) Consultation (Regulation 18) – March-April 2021

Publication Consultation (Regulation 19) – November-December 2021

Submission (Regulation 22) – March 2022

Independent Examination (Regulation 24) – May 2022-January 2023

Receipt of Inspector’s Report (Regulation 25) – March 2023

Adoption (Regulation 26) – April 2023

Project Plan and Local Development Schemes

South Worcestershire Councils Response to the Changes to the Current Planning System Consultation, 25 September 2020

The South Worcestershire Councils have published their response to the Changes to the Current Planning System Consultation.

pdf SWCs Response to the Changes to the Current Planning System Consultation (281 KB)

Covid-19 Causes Delay to SWDP Review, 24 July 2020

The completion of the review of the South Worcestershire Development Plan has been delayed due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

It was hoped that the document would be ready for public examination in early 2021, but lockdown restrictions have made it impossible to complete a number of technical assessments and evidence gathering needed to support the plan. This includes additional traffic and air quality modelling. These cannot be carried out currently as vehicle movements are still not close enough to pre-lockdown levels.

Over the next few months the necessary assessments and studies will take place. The plan to be sent for public examination will be published, subject to approval by all three South Worcestershire Councils, in October 2021. It will then be submitted to the Secretary of State in February 2022. The expectation is it will then be examined before the end of 2022 and adopted shortly after. The proposed timetable changes still need to be approved by the three South Worcestershire Councils. They will be considered at meetings in September.

Cllr Lucy Hodgson, Chair of the SWDP Joint Advisory Panel, said: “We’re disappointed we have to push back the SWDPR timetable but it was unavoidable given the delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Many consultants needed to complete the technical work required remain on furlough, and any data we capture now about traffic movements or air quality would not give us a reliable picture.

“Given the importance of this document to meeting future demand for housing and economic growth in South Worcestershire, it’s important the plan is robust so it’s right we take the time to do this work.

“The team will do everything possible to make sure there is no further delay to the timetable but that will depend on how the pandemic progresses and the impact of a second wave of Covid-19 or any future lockdown restrictions.”

The revised SWDP sets out how a Government requirement to build another 14,000 new homes across Malvern Hills District, Worcester City and Wychavon District by 2041 will be met. This is on top of the need for 28,400 new homes by 2030, more than half of which have already been built, set out in the current plan.