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Local Plan clears major milestone

Wyre Forest District Council has given the go-ahead for a new draft Local Plan to be submitted to Government.

A special meeting of full council last night formally signed off the document paving the way for it to be submitted to the Secretary of State in April.

The Government will then appoint a Planning Inspector to oversee a full public examination to determine whether the plan is ‘sound’ which will include holding a series of formal hearings later this year to hear representations from groups and individuals who have put forward objections to the Plan.

The hearings will be open to the public to observe and will be advertised nearer the time when the Inspector sets the dates. Only people who have already indicated they wish to appear at the hearings will be allowed to attend and take part.

Before being formally adopted by full council, the Plan had previously been examined by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, following public consultations held in 2018 and 2019 which generated over 5,000 responses from members of the public and other stakeholders.

Councillor Fran Oborski, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Economic Regeneration, Planning and Capital Investments, said:“This is a major milestone in getting the Plan adopted, which is  one of our key priorities.

“The Local Plan will provide a clear direction for future development, creating the right balance between protecting those parts of the district that are important in spatial or heritage terms while accommodating growth to meet the housing needs of present and future residents and space for businesses to ensure that we are a prosperous district going forward.”

The plan proposes to deliver just over 6000 new houses over the period 2016-2036 and 29 hectares of employment land. The documents being proposed for approval also include a number of Statements of Common Ground which have been reached with neighbouring authorities and with key stakeholders.