Local Plan – Welwyn Hatfield – Progress update

WHBC Cabinet Housing and Planning Panel Newsletter No 8 reports that they have recommended to Cabinet a revised timetable for the preparation of the Welwyn Hatfield Local Plan.

The following are extracts from the WHBC Newsletter No 8 published October 2015

To get your own copy of the Newsletters you are invited to email your details to planningpolicy@welhat.gov.uk or telephone 01707 357532.

The Borough Newsletter No 8 declares:

The revised timetable reflects the amount of time that it will take to: analyse nearly 6,000 consultation responses to the draft plan; assess 61 new and/or amended sites; update evidence, such as the need for new homes in the borough; receive evidence from third-party studies such as the Herts Water Study; and liaise with service providers in respect of schools and healthcare and other infrastructure.

New Sites

The Newsletter identifies that many new and/or amended sites have been put forward for potential inclusion in the Local Plan since the draft was put out to consultation earlier this year. Details of these proposed sites can be found on the Local Plan website, but they come with a caveat. In none of these instances have the proposed sites yet been assessed for suitability.

Of special interest to the WPAG, there are a number of newly proposed housing sites affecting Welwyn directly, and it is worthwhile familiarising yourself with these, in readiness for our involvement in the Consultation on the final draft Local Plan which is scheduled for the Summer of 2016.

Drop In Events

But in fact you do not have to wait that long, because the Borough is running two drop-in events where these proposed new/amended sites will be able to be viewed, as follows:

20th October 2015     – at The Hub, Hatfield Town Centre between 4 pm and 7.30 p.m.

11th November 2015 – at The Focolare Centre, Parkway, Welwyn Garden City, between 4 p.m. and 7.30 p.m.

At these events we are informed that officers will be available to answer questions about the Local Plan process and the feedback received to date.

We repeat, the Borough cautions that these sites have not yet been assessed and therefore no decision has been made on their suitability.

Local Plan Timeline

Autumn – Winter 2015    Review responses and further technical work

Spring 2016                    Complete evidence, site assessments, draft final Local Plan

Summer 2016                 Consultation on final draft Local Plan

Autumn/Winter 2016       Review responses and submit for examination

Early 2017                       Examination in Public

Spring/Autumn 2017       Examination Inspector’s Report and Adoption