Response from Housing Minister to letter regarding local plan

Following the Prime Minister's Conservative Party Conference speech in which he mentioned the importance of protecting the green belt, Cabinet wrote a letter to the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities seeking support to achieve a sound local plan.

Council offices

Cabinet received a response from the Housing Minister, Christopher Pincher MP, which reiterates that the government's priority for ensuring local plans are in place by 2023 has not changed, and that plan makers should continue to work under the existing guidelines.

Cllr Stephen Boulton, Executive Member for Planning, said: "The letter from the Housing Minister stresses the importance of having an up-to-date plan that is consistent with national policy. This is something we very much recognise and are working hard to deliver.

"It also notes that when councils agree on housing requirements, we are expected to take account of any local constraints, including pressures on the green belt. Mr Pincher is clear that councils and their communities are best placed to take decisions on local planning matters in their area.

"We are grateful for the minister's response, and our proposed next steps will be presented to the Cabinet Planning and Parking Panel in January."