Contents:

  1. Latest News: The adoption of the Placemaking Plan
  2. The Planning Inspector
  3. The Programme Officer
  4. Examination Hearings and Documents
  5. Consultation on the Main Modifications
  6. Placemaking Plan and determining planning applications

Last updated: 14th July 2017


1. Latest News: The adoption of the Placemaking Plan

Bath and North East Somerset Council’s Placemaking Plan was formally adopted by the Council on 13th July 2017.  The Inspector’s Report and the recommended modifications were discussed at Full Council on 13th July 2017, after which the Council voted to adopt the Placemaking Plan.  The Council also considered and accepted a number of minor modifications to the Placemaking Plan to ensure consistency and accuracy.

The Placemaking Plan now forms part of the Development Plan for the District and will be used in the determination of planning applications submitted to the Council alongside policies in the Core Strategy (2014), Joint Waste Core Strategy (2011), the remaining saved policies in the Local Plan (2007) and made Neighbourhood Development Plans.

Following the adoption of the Placemaking Plan, there is a six week period during which any person aggrieved by the Placemaking Plan could make an application to the High Court under Section 113 of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 on the grounds that the document is not within the appropriate powers, or that a procedural requirement has not been complied with. 

The Inspector's Final Report

In her final report the Planning Inspector has found the Placemaking Plan ‘sound’ subject to a number of modifications. These are summarised as follows:

  • Deletion of changes to Core Strategy considered to be of a nature or scale that would materially change the strategic approach and strategy established in the Core Strategy;
  • Amendment to Policy NE2A ‘Landscape Setting of Settlements’ to ensure consistency with Policy NE2 ‘Landscape Character’ and national policy in respect of any assessment of harm and mitigation;
  • Changes to various policies to ensure consistency with national policy relating to Green Belts;
  • Inclusion of Local BAP Habitat (Post Industrial sites) in list of Bath’s Ecological Networks (Policy NE5);
  • Delete safeguarded land for road schemes with no prospect of implementation;
  • Alter Policy ST6 ‘Park and Ride’ to ensure clear and convincing justification required for need for facility and any harm arising; and
  • Include greater flexibility in application of car parking standards.

The Inspector’s letter and Report can be viewed via the links below:

*Please note that paragraph 90 of the Inspector’s Final Report erroneously refers to the local green space at Millers Walk (LGR3). LGR3 should be referred to as Miller Walk and references in paragraph 90 to the public footpath from Millers Walk to Westminster Road should refer to Miller Walk and Bathampton Lane.

They can also be viewed free of charge at the following locations Mondays –Thursdays (9am – 5pm), Fridays (9am - 4.30pm):

  • One Stop Shop, Lewis House, Manvers Street, Bath BA1 1JG
  • One Stop Shop, Keynsham Civic Centre, Market Walk, Keynsham, BS31 1FS
  • The Hollies, High St, Midsomer Norton BA3 2DT  

Copies will also be available at all Bath & North East Somerset libraries.  Information on opening hours is available on the Council’s website at www.bathnes.gov.uk/libraries

Receipt of the Inspector’s Report represents the end of the Placemaking Plan Examination and therefore no further comments relating to the Placemaking Plan can be accepted.  Under the Regulations there is no opportunity to formally object to the Inspector’s recommendations. 

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2. The Planning Inspector

The Placemaking Plan was submitted to the Planning Inspectorate on 12th April 2016 for independent examination.  The Placemaking Plan will be subject to Examination in Public conducted by an Independent Planning Inspector.  Claire Sherratt DIP URP MRTPI has been appointed as the Planning Inspector.  

The role of the Inspector is to consider whether the document is:

  • Legally compliant: meets the requirements of the Planning Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 and associated Regulation, and
  • Sound: whether it is justified, effective and consistent with national policy.

The Inspector will take into account the representations submitted on the draft Core Strategy and it is likely that a number of informal hearings sessions will take place on matters and issues identified by the Inspector. The hearings are currently anticipated to start in mid to late July at the earliest.   Following the closure of the examination, the Inspector will prepare a report with recommendations that will be binding on the Council.

11th November 2016: The Inspector issued her Interim Report (ID/17) on the submitted Placemaking Plan following the Examination Hearings, the Council updated its Schedule of Rolling Changes as a result.

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3. The Programme Officer

The Programme Officer, Chris Banks, will act as the contact point for any person who has made representations on the Draft Placemaking Plan (Pre-Submission version) December 2015, and as a liaison between the Inspector, the Council and examination participants.

The Programme Officer acts independently on behalf of the Inspector to organise and manage the administrative and procedural matters of the examination process and is the first point of contact for any questions relating to timetabling or procedural matters.  All statements will also be submitted through him.

Any matters that anyone wishes to raise with the Inspector should be submitted via the Programme Officer.

Contact details:

  • Chris Banks
    Programme Officer
    C/O Banks Solutions
    64 Lavinia Way
    East Preston
    West Sussex
    BN16 1EF
  • Tel: 01903 783722
  • Mob: 07817 322750
  • Email: bankssolutionsuk@gmail.com

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4. Examination Hearings and Documents

The Examination Hearings commenced on 13th September 2016 and ended on 13th October 2016.  

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5. Consultation on the Main Modifications

The Planning Inspector invited comments on the Main Modifications to the Submitted Placemaking Plan (see her note ID/18).  The Main Modifications are those which the Inspector considers are necessary to make the plan sound and/or legally compliant.  Alongside the Main Modifications, the Council produced a Schedule of Minor Proposed Changes on which people were also able to comment on; these changes are not considered necessary for the plan’s soundness or legal compliance.

The following documents were published for comment between 5th January and 5pm on 14th February 2017. 

Representations made submitted during the consultation on the Main Modifications to the Placemaking Plan have been send to the Planning Inspector for her consideration, they are available below.  The original representations are available to view (with personal details redacted) on request.

If, after considering the representations, the Inspector finds the document sound it is anticipated the Placemaking Plan will be adopted in late Spring 2017, following receipt of her final recommendations (Inspector’s Report).

Should you have any queries, please do not hesitate to get in contact with the Planning Policy team on 01225 477548 or by email at placemaking_plan@bathnes.gov.uk

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6.   Placemaking Plan and determining planning applications

The policies of the emerging Placemaking Plan are a material consideration in determining planning applications. The weight to be given by the LPA to the emerging Placemaking Plan policies is set out in this schedule (click to view).

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