Breckland Council to consult public on future development

Breckland Council. Picture: Ian Burt

Breckland Council. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: IAN BURT

The people of Breckland are being asked to have their say on how their area will grow over the next 22 years.

Breckland Council is set to launch its consultation into the development of a new Local Plan after its cabinet gave the go ahead at a meeting yesterday.

The district council will be calling on businesses, landowners and smaller councils to put forward potential sites for development.

The council estimates it will need to provide between 634 and 770 homes per year up until 2031.

Mark Kiddle-Morris, Breckland cabinet member for assets and strategic development, said: “This is a call for landowners to put land in for us to consider at a later stage.

“The new legislation gives us more freedom to set realistic targets based on the latest figures for population growth and changes in demographics.

“Although the Core Strategy runs until 2026, we wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to create a single, up-to-date policy document where housing targets are based on local need, rather than a national formula.

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“The economic climate has also changed since the Core Strategy was adopted, and developing a new Local Plan will enable us to offer more support and opportunities to local businesses through the planning process.

“Town and Parish councils will receive a copy of this document.”

The current strategic planning documents, The Core Strategy, were adopted between 2009 and 20012 as a result of government guidance.

Gordon Bambridge, cabinet member for democratic services and public protection, called for the public to get involved with the process.

He said: “This document is going for consultation and it will only really work if the majority of people will comment on it.”

The development of a new Local Plan will also enable the council to identify a ‘five year land supply for housing’; this will help prevent applications for housing outside settlement boundaries.

Much of the evidence contained in the current planning policy documents is still relevant and will be incorporated into the new Local Plan. When completed, Breckland’s Local Plan will set out the council’s vision and objectives for how the district should develop and grow over the next two decades.

A consultation meeting for parish and town councils will take place on November 17.

There will be a series of consultation meetings open to the public which will cover the towns in the area.

Consultations will be held at Dereham Memorial Hall on November 20 from 2pm until 7pm, Swaffham Assembly Rooms on November 24 from 2pm to 6.30pm, Watton Queens Hall on November 27 from 2pm to 7pm,

Attleborough Town Council on December 4 from 2pm to 7pm and Thetford Guildhall on December 9 from 2pm to 7pm.

During the cabinet meeting members also approved £305,000 of grants to support parish and town councils in the area.

What do you think Breckland Council’s planning strategy should be? Write to Doug Faulkner at