A New Draft Local Plan for West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland
West Dorset District Council and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council are working together to prepare a joint Local Plan. When adopted the Local Plan will form the main basis for making decisions on planning applications.
In 2011, the Elected Members of West Dorset District Council and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council decided that the best way forward for the preparation of planning policy would be through the production of a joint Local Plan covering the local authority areas of Weymouth & Portland and West Dorset. When adopted, the new Local Plan will replace the two councils existing adopted Local Plans.
In light of this decision, work has now ceased on preparing the Local Development Framework for West Dorset and the Local Development Framework for Weymouth and Portland. The research and evidence for West Dorset, draft Core Strategy and research and evidence for Weymouth & Portland as well as consultation findings have instead been used in preparation of the new draft Local Plan.
Pre-Submission Local Plan
During June and July 2012, West Dorset District Council and Weymouth and Portland Borough Council consulted on a pre-submission draft of the Local Plan. The Local Plan sets out a long term planning strategy for the area up to the year 2031 and includes detailed policies and site proposals for housing, employment, leisure and infrastructure. Around 2,000 representations from over 900 individuals and organisations were made and have now been analysed, a summary of the pre-submission consultation (pdf, 1Mb) (opens in a new window) is now available. A small proportion of these representations suggested new development sites for inclusion in the Local Plan. During November and December 2012, West Dorset District Council and Weymouth and Portland Borough Council consulted on these as part of an Alternative Sites (pdf, 5Mb) (opens in a new window) consultation document. Local people were invited to make comments on the proposals so that their views could also be considered directly by an Independent Inspector when the Local Plan is submitted for consideration in 2013. A summary of the findings from the Local Plan - Alternative Sites Consultation Summary (pdf, 737kb) (opens in a new window) is now available.
An Alternative Strategy
After considering the responses to the pre-submission Local Plan, West Dorset District Council then consulted on an alternative strategy, to include a potential new housing and employment site at Dorchester and reduce development on previously suggested sites at Sherborne, Beaminster and Crossways. The consultation closed on the 14 March 2013. Full details of the consultation can be found on our webpage Potential Changes to the Draft Local Plan. A summary of the findings from the Local Plan - Alternative Strategy Consultation Summary (pdf, 1Mb) (opens in a new window) is now available.
What happens next?
The draft Local Plan, together with a schedule of proposed modifications will be presented to councillors at the following council meetings:
West Dorset Policy Scrutiny Committee - 13 May 2013
West Dorset Executive Committee - 14 May 2013
West Dorset Full Council - 21 May 2013
Weymouth & Portland Policy Development Committee - 20 May 2013
Weymouth & Portland Management Committee - 4 June 2013
Weymouth & Portland Full Council - 17 June 2013
The Local Plan will then be submitted to an independent inspectorate for consideration. It is anticipated that a public examination will be held by an independent Planning Inspector in September/October 2013. If the plan is found 'sound', the Local Plan could be adopted in early 2014.
If you would like to be kept up to date with progress on the development of the new Local Plan, please register by contacting the Strategic Policy team.
- Preparing a Draft New Local Plan for West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland
Since 2007, West Dorset District Council and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council have been gathering research and information to identify the issues and needs of the area in order to prepare new planning policies. Evidence can come from reports, strategies, specific pieces of research and from a wide range of sources including organisations that operate at a local level or organisations that operate on a wider level but have specialist knowledge or expertise.
- Draft West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland Local Plan Sustainability Appraisal
The Sustainability Appraisal is an objectives-led process, whereby the potential impacts of a plan are determined by assessing the Local Plan policy against a series of sustainability objectives aimed at promoting sustainable development.
- Local Plan Background Papers
A series of Background Papers have been prepared to inform and fully support the policies in the draft Local Plan by bringing together guidance and evidence from a wide range of sources.
- Evidence base (research information)
Under the planning system introduced in 2004 the Local Development Framework must be based on researched information. West Dorset District Council's Planning Policy Team carries out a wide range of research for policy development.
Name: Strategic Policy (West Dorset)
Tel: 01305 252386
Fax: 01305 251481
Full details for Strategic Policy (West Dorset)
Name: Strategic Planning (Weymouth & Portland)
Tel: 01305 838214
Fax: 01305 750531
Full details for Strategic Planning (Weymouth & Portland)