Replacement Torfaen Local Development Plan
If you would like to be notified of future consultations on the preparation of the RLDP you will need to register your interest and hereby give your permission to be included on our RLDP Consultation Database. Please fill in the registration form and email or submit a written copy to the address indicated on the form and read our General Data Protection Regulations information below.
If you require any further information please feel free to contact the Planning Policy & Implementation Team via firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01633 648039 / 648805.
General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)
On 25th May 2018, the General Data Protection Regulations came into force, placing new restrictions on how organisations can hold and use your personal data and defining your rights with regard to that data. With reference to the Replacement Local Development Plan process, the GDPR applies to the Candidate Sites, the RLDP Consultation Database and comments received in response to all public consultations. This information will be held in accordance with the Replacement Local Development Plan GDPR Privacy Notice (Torfaen CBC) (March 2020) which can be found here or a paper copy provided on request.
Delivery Agreement (DA)
The Second Revised Delivery Agreement (DA) on the 'timetable' for producing the RLDP and how the community will be involved (known as the 'Community Involvement Scheme') was submitted to the Welsh Government Minister on 2nd October 2020 and was subsequently approved on 9th October 2020. In accordance with the requirements of Regulation 10 of the Town and Country Planning (Local Development Plan) (Wales) Regulations 2005 it is has now been published on the website and made available at the Principal Council office (when open) along with the approval letter from the Chief Planner.
However, given the extended consultation period on the RLDP Preferred Strategy, due to the Covid-19 lockdowns, the 2nd Revised DA is now beyond the 3 months slippage allowed by the Welsh Government. Therefore, a 3rd Revised DA will now need to be agreed by Council and then the Welsh Government; and published in due course.
As part of the RLDP preparation process, the Council invited stakeholders to submit ‘candidate sites’ for all types of land uses at the end of 2018, which the Council has assessed for potential allocation in the RLDP. For information on submitted candidate sites and our Draft Assessment of them, plus details on the recent and future consultations and second call for candidates sites / further supporting information (Nov 20 - Jan 21) exercise, please follow this link to our dedicated Candidate Sites page. Finally, the Council is not seeking any further candidate sites, but will consult on its final assessment of all duly submitted candidate sites later this year alongside the next ‘Deposit’ stage of the RLDP.
Torfaen Replacement Local Development Plan 2018 – 2033 Preferred Strategy
The Preferred Strategy is the first formal publication in the RLDP preparation process. It provides the strategic direction for the development and use of land until 2033. It also sets out how much development is needed and broadly where this is likely to be. It represents the completion of a period of pre-deposit plan preparation and engagement, the outcome of which has had a clear influence over the selection of the Preferred Strategy.
The overall purpose of the RLDP Preferred Strategy is to:
- Identify key issues, challenges and drivers for the County Borough;
- Define an RLDP Vision and set of overarching RLDP Objectives that respond to the key issues, challenges and drivers;
- State the anticipated scale of future growth in population, housing and jobs, based on the analysis of several strategic growth options;
- Describe the overall spatial planning framework for the County Borough, based on an analysis of potential spatial options; and
- Set out a broad suite of strategic policies that will deliver the RLDP Vision and Objectives, including the identification of four large Strategic Sites necessary to deliver the Preferred Strategy.
The Preferred Strategy for the Replacement Local Development Plan (RLDP) was approved by Council on 10th March 2020; but due to the Covid 19 pandemic, consultation was delayed until the end of November 2020, following approval of a Covid-19 update to the RLDP at Council on 29th September 2020.
Therefore, the Council consulted on the Torfaen Replacement Local Development Plan (RLDP) Preferred Strategy for 5 months rather than the statutory 6 weeks, between 23rd November 2020 and 30th April 2021. In conjunction with the Preferred Strategy, views were also sought on the associated Initial Integrated Sustainability Appraisal Report (ISA - details below), the Habitats Regulations Assessment Report (HRA - details below) and the draft Candidate Sites Assessment Report (CSAR - details below).
All of these consultation documents and further supporting evidence can be found in our Publications List webpage.
Integrated Initial Sustainability Appraisal Report
The Preferred Strategy has been subject to and informed by an iterative process of Integrated Sustainability Appraisal (ISA) which fulfils the requirements and legal duties for Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA), Well-being of Future Generations Assessment (WGFGA), Health Impact Assessment (HIA), Equality Impact Assessment (EqIA) and Welsh Language Impact Assessment (WLIA). ISA is a mechanism for considering and communicating the likely effects of an emerging plan, and alternatives in terms of key sustainability issues. The aim of ISA is to inform and influence the plan-making process with a view to avoiding and mitigating negative impacts and maximising positive impacts. The more promising candidate sites and four RLDP: Preferred Strategy ‘strategic sites’ were also assessed in the ISA.
Habitat Regulation Assessment
The Preferred Strategy has also been subject to Habitat Regulation Assessment (HRA), a statutory requirement, that identifies any aspects of the Plan that would cause an adverse effect on the integrity of designated European nature conservation sites, either in isolation or in combination with other plans and projects; and undertake an ‘Appropriate Assessment’ if necessary and advise on policy mechanisms for delivering mitigation or protection. Whilst there are no such European sites within the boundary of Torfaen, the Likely Significant Effects (LSEs) for ten European sites within 15km of the County Borough have been assessed. In summary, the HRA concluded that LSEs can be excluded for the majority of these European sites; but a definitive Appropriate Assessment for three of these European sites (the Severn Estuary, Usk Bat Sites and River Usk) has been deferred to the HRA of the Deposit Plan, when full details of the plan proposals and mitigation polices will be known.
Thank you to those who made comments on the above documents, they are much appreciated. All comments will now be addressed in an ‘Initial Consultation Report ‘to be considered by Council, later this year, before a decision is made on the next ‘Deposit’ version of the RLDP, which will also be consulted upon.
Local Development Plan Review Report (January 2018)
The Council adopted its Local Development Plan (LDP) in December 2013. The plan guides the development and use of land in the County Borough until 2021. To ensure that Local Development Plans are kept up-to-date, local planning authorities are required to commence a review of their LDPs at least once every four years following adoption, or sooner if the findings of the Annual Monitoring Reports (AMR) indicate significant concerns with a plan’s implementation.
A review of the Torfaen Local Development Plan commenced in 2017; and the first step was the publication of the LDP Review Report in April 2018. In summary, a plan review report should be based upon the findings of the published LDP AMRs, significant contextual changes since adoption, a review of the current LDP performance, required updates to the evidence base, etc. Then, following stakeholder consultation on these matters and the form of the plan review, and the consideration of any responses received by Council, culminated in the publication of the Torfaen LDP Review Report, which can be viewed here. An Executive Summary of the Torfaen LDP Review Report is also available.
The Draft Review Report was subject to 6 weeks consultation, with over 100 stakeholders, between 31st January and 14th March 2018; and 21 responses were received. The summary of consultation responses, incorporating the Council’s comments and recommendations on them, which were agreed by Council on the 17th April 2018, can be viewed in the Torfaen LDP Draft Review Report of Consultation document.
The Council is also required to publish the evidence the Review Report was based upon; which are the 2015, 2016 and 2017 Torfaen LDP Annual Monitoring Reports, which can be found on the Annual Monitoring Report page.
Based on the evidence contained in the Review Report, it is concluded that the LDP should be revised and that this should take the form of a full revision procedure.
At its meeting on 17th April 2018, Torfaen County Borough Council approved the commencement of a full revision to its Local Development Plan, which will result in a brand new LDP for Torfaen for the period up to 2033.
Last Modified: 12/05/2021
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