Residents asked if housing plan is legally sound

By Tim Clarke Wednesday 09 January 2013 Updated: 09/01 10:16

RESIDENTS are being asked for their help in determining whether a blueprint for the future of housing and economic growth in south Worcestershire is legally sound.

A new six week consultation opens this Friday on the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) which maps out how the region will accommodate 23,000 new homes by 2030.

The SWDP has been jointly prepared by Worcester City Council, Malvern Hills District Council and Wychavon District Council and once adopted, it will form the basis for planning decisions during the next two decades.

The public has already been consulted on the proposals within the document but the district councils are now seeking people's views to test whether the plan complies with the necessary legal requirements and is 'sound'.

Councillor Marc Bayliss, chairman of the SWDP Joint Advisory Panel, said: “This consultation is not about the actual proposals in the plan, so it’s not a chance for local people to suggest a new site for employment use or to call for homes to be built elsewhere. Instead it’s a chance for people to say if we’ve addressed the necessary legal and procedural tests. Have we got the evidence to back our proposals? Have we followed all the rules about how a Local Plan should be compiled?"

The consultation is the final stage before the SWDP is submitted to the Secretary of State to be examined and the three councils hope to formally adopt it by the end of the year.

The consultation can be found at www.swdevelopmentplan.org and printed copies of the forms will also be available at council offices and libraries.

Responses can be made online or completed forms can be sent to contact@swdevelopmentplan.org or posted to South Worcestershire Development Plan Team, FREEPOST RLTS-XRLK-AKGK, Orchard House, Farrier Street, Worcester WR1 3BB.

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