Published Wednesday, 6th July 2016

At its meeting on 14 July, the Executive will be asked to consider the next part of the Council’s local plan for public consultation later in the summer.

The Development Management Plan (DMP) will include detailed policies that translate the planning principles in the Council’s adopted Core Strategy into ‘on-the-ground’ development and allocate sites for specific types and amounts of development. It will also address a wide range of important local planning issues. 

What the consultation document includes 

•   Proposed policies to guide decision making on planning applications – including development design to protect character and quality of life and access and parking on new developments.
•   Policy designations - zones for local green spaces, residential areas of special character, employment areas and local shopping centres.
•   Potential development sites for housing, shops and employment - including ‘urban extensions’ and Horley strategic employment site.

An average of 460 new homes is needed in the borough each year. As well as sites within urban areas, the consultation seeks views on potential ‘urban extensions’ around the edges of Horley, Redhill, Merstham and Reigate, including on land that is currently Green Belt. The final Development Management Plan will allocate sites for development.

Balancing housing need, economic growth and the environment 

Cllr Tony Schofield, Executive Member for Planning Policy, said: “The borough needs more new homes because people are living longer and in smaller households. Reigate and Banstead is also a desirable place to live and this adds to the demand for houses. A shortage of housing means that house prices are beyond the reach of many and that local businesses struggle to find local workers who can afford to live in the area.

“New homes will be provided in existing towns as a priority, but some will need to be built around the edges of our existing towns, including on Green Belt land. However these non-urban sites will be held in reserve and only used if absolutely necessary.   

“As a council we will need to make some difficult decisions about how to balance providing new housing, growing the economy and protecting the environment. There are benefits in making these decisions ourselves as it means we have more control over where development will go. 

New facilties and services 

“Without a plan, speculative applications by developers could be decided by Government Planning Inspectors at appeal and we are keen to avoid this.

“New development will help to pay for local services needed to support the growing communities. For example the consultation document identifies potential sites for two new primary schools and a new healthcare facility, which would be funded by developer contributions.

“The proposed consultation document is based on national planning policy and a huge amount of evidence and technical studies. This is the start of a long process. No decisions have yet been made about which sites will be allocated and public consultation will be a vital part of this process. I urge you to have your say when the time comes.”

Public consultation 

If agreed by the Executive, the Development Management Plan consultation document will be subject to a ten week public consultation from 1 August to 10 October 2016. This is longer than the statutory six week consultation to reflect the summer holiday period.

This ‘Regulation 18 consultation’ is a statutory stage of public consultation in the plan making process to inform what the final DMP should include. 

The consultation plans include exhibitions and drop in sessions in locations across the borough to give residents and businesses the opportunity to find out more and ask questions.

Register your interest

The Council intends to publicise the consultation when it takes place. If in the meantime you would like to receive direct notification by email or post about this and other planning policy topics, please register your interest via our online form on the DMP page, email or call 01737 276178.

For more information about the DMP visit the council’s DMP page.

The papers for the 14 July Executive meeting are available on the meeting dates, agendas and minutes page