Bedfordshire Local Plan Watch - Autumn 2020
Bedfordshire is an area of opportunity and a focus for growth given its location at the centre of the Oxford-MK-Cambridge Arc. The combination of East-West Rail infrastructure with the provision of new train stations and road infrastructure provides the platform for significant employment and housing led growth.
- A Review of the Bedford Borough Local Plan 2030 is underway with a Call for Sites having closed in August and an Issues and Options Consultation having closed in September.
- Central Bedfordshire EiP Main Modification representations have been published and the Council are now awaiting the publication of the Inspectors MIQ’s to enable further Hearing Sessions to be held.
- Housing requirements are set to increase substantially throughout Bedfordshire as a result of the proposed changes to the standard method for calculating housing need set out as part of a Government consultation looking at potential changes to the planning system.
- It is not anticipated that the Bedfordshire Authorities will be in a position to benefit from the transitional arrangements for the proposed new Standard Methodology for housing.
Bedford Borough Local Plan 2030 was adopted 15th January 2020. This plan was submitted under the transitional arrangements put in place during the introduction of the Standardised Methodology.
A review of the Local Plan has commenced. A Call for Sites closed on the 14 August 2020 and an Issues and Options consultation closed on the 4 September 2020.
It is not anticipated that the Bedfordshire Authorities will be in a position to benefit from from the transitional arrangements for the proposed new Standard Methodology for housing.
Despite Bedford Borough having the most recently adopted Development Plan, there are a number of pending application and appeal cases challenging their 5yr Housing Land Supply.
The emerging Local Plan was submitted for examination on 30th April 2018.
Hearing Sessions commenced on 21st May 2019 and closed on 26th July 2019. A consultation on additional evidence ran from 18th June – 12th August 2020.
In August 2020, the Council responded to a question from the Inspectors regarding the publication of the 2018 based household projections. The Council have asserted that there are no implications for the examination arising from either the 2018 household projections or the Leeds case.
Further Hearing Sessions were scheduled for July 2020, but were delayed as a result of to Covid-19 and are now anticipated to take place in Q4 2020.
Should the Plan be found sound, the original submission included the provision for a partial review within six months of adoption.
On 7th November 2017, Luton Borough Council adopted the Luton Local Plan (2011-2031).
Luton originally intended to progress a new Local Plan in 2019 with submission in 2021, at this point in time no steps have been made to progress with this review.