Cabinet recommends full update to Local Plan

Ariel view of Kirklees village

Over the last few months, we’ve been formally reviewing the Kirklees Local Plan.

Based on the findings of this review, Cabinet have now decided to recommend a full update.

What is the Local Plan?

The Local Plan lays out how much development we want to achieve, and where that development should take place.

It also sets out a suite of policies which are used alongside national planning guidance when determining planning applications.

Why have we reviewed the Local Plan?

Back when we first launched our Local Plan in 2019, we committed to fully reviewing it within five years, in line with government legislation.  A lot can change in five years, and this has never been more relevant.  We adopted the Local Plan before the announcement of the Climate Emergency, and before the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting impacts on our local and national economy.

We took into account lots of key issues linked closely with growth and development, both in Kirklees and nationally – including climate change, environmental strategy, transport strategy, housing growth and the economy.

What happens next?

Now that Cabinet have chosen to recommend a full update to the Local Plan, a final decision on this needs to be made by Full Council.  The next Full Council meeting is in November.

The process of updating the Local Plan would involve consultation with the public.  We’ll consider in-depth all the many different factors that, according to the review’s findings, have impacted the Local Plan over the last five years.

To make sure local people and businesses have every opportunity to get involved, we’d update our Local Development Scheme (that’s a timetable that outlines key stages of the process, and when you’re able to give your input).  We’d also prepare a revised Statement of Community Involvement (which details how local communities will be engaged).

Councillor Graham Turner, Cabinet Member for Growth & Regeneration, says:

“When we first launched the Kirklees Local Plan back in 2019, we could never have imagined what the next five years would have in store.

“While this review was always going to take place, its importance right now can’t be overstated.  We need to make sure that the strategy we’re working to takes into account the colossal changes which have taken place since the Local Plan was adopted, so that we can deliver our ambitions for Kirklees.

“I know we have some huge challenges on our hands, but there is also huge potential across our district.  The Local Plan is about how we work within our current constraints to deliver that potential – strengthening our local economy, creating much-needed housing, and bringing huge benefits for everyone who lives and works in Kirklees.  The impacts of this work will be felt for not just years but decades to come.”