Central Bedfordshire Council Local Plan Next Stage of Consultation
Comments are required by 5 pm 12th August
Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) have produced a number of new documents which are now available for public consultation. It is important that anyone with an interest in the Local Plan and what CBC are proposing, looks at these documents to decide if they want to make further representations to the Inspectors.
We have briefly explained below what this new consultation is about and how you should make your views known
Why is this happening?
The Local Plan Inquiry was held during May- July 2019. It was clear during the Inquiry that the Government appointed independent Inspectors were becoming increasingly concerned over the soundness of the Draft Plan and some of the proposals in this.
The Inspectors wrote a highly critical letter to CBC setting out their concerns which were very wide ranging and included many of the proposed allocations within the Plan. You can find a copy of this letter here.
Rather than acknowledge any of these weaknesses CBC has been carrying on regardless, trying to justify their original proposals – you can see a copy of their response to the Inspectors here.
CBC has now produced a number of documents and also allowed the Developers of various sites to produce further studies which, not surprisingly, continue to argue for development of some of the sites the Inspectors had serious concerns over.
What will happen next?
Once the comments have been submitted the Inspectors will look at these and the evidence provided by CBC. They may decide to re-open the Public Inquiry. Alternatively they may consider they have enough information to recommend any changes they consider should be made to the Plan. Any major changes will require another stage of consultation.
What should you do?
The Documents and link to the Council’s relevant web page can be found here.
Please do look at these and consider if you want to make your views known. You don’t need to restate any original comment. But it is important to consider whether there are any new facts which change your views, and comment on why this has changed or why your opinion has stayed the same.
Please ignore CBC’s comments under s15 of their Local Plan update where they say the consultation hasn’t started – it has.
Comments need to be submitted by 5pm on 12th August, and CBC’s website sets out how these are to be submitted.
We will be reviewing the documents over the next few weeks and will post our views on line over the next few weeks.