13/03/17: Breckland's 'blueprint for growth' enters final stages

Plans which outline how Breckland is expected to grow over the coming 20 years will be further refined next week.

Breckland Council's Local Plan is now entering its final stages and members of the council's Working Group are set to meet on March 15 to further shape the draft document, focusing on Dereham.

Once adopted, the Local Plan will provide the framework for growth in Breckland, supporting the development of a vibrant economy that provides homes and jobs for local people. It will also mean future housing developments can be more focused on agreed areas of the district's towns and villages.

The Local Plan has been in production over a number of years and numerous public events and meetings with town and parish council representatives have already been held by Breckland Council. The proposals are due to be presented to Breckland's full Council in May and Breckland is expected to be the first in Norfolk to have a new Local Plan in place.

Cllr Gordon Bambridge, Chairman of the Local Plan Working Group, said: "Breckland's Local Plan will be the blueprint for growth in the district for the coming decades. It will be key to the future prosperity of the district and it is absolutely essential that we get it right. We've consulted widely throughout the Local Plan process and feedback from local people and businesses, together with advice from expert bodies such as Highways and Natural England, has helped shape the current draft Local Plan document."

The meeting later this week (March 15) will see members carefully consider issues related to the successful delivery of growth in Dereham, including sites, new housing numbers, and infrastructure. An additional meeting on 17 March is planned to help address any outstanding points about the overarching Local Plan

Cllr Bambridge added: "We are aware that some people have concerns about aspects of the draft proposals for Dereham, so I'm pleased we will have another opportunity to discuss the plans with representatives from the town council so we can further consider the best way to deliver growth in the town."

To help deliver managed growth, Breckland Council is also looking to work with its partners on projects which will complement the Local Plan. These include working with Norfolk County Council's Highways team to examine transport issues and with town and parish councils on shared visions for long-term growth.

The draft Local Plan document will be taken to Council in May and, if approved, will enter a six-week pre-publication period shortly afterwards. During this time the draft document will be available at a number of outlets for public view, and will be published on the Council website. It will then be submitted to a Government Planning Inspector for scrutiny.