Proposed Submission Site Allocations Local Plan

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What is this consultation about?

Forest Heath District Council is planning for long term growth to meet demand for housing and employment land so that there is certainty in how and where our settlements will grow. This submission (Regulation 19) consultation, on the council's Site Allocations Local Plan (SALP) is your final opportunity to comment on the plan.

The Sustainability Appraisal and Habitats Regulations Assessment which accompany this document, also form part of this consultation, their findings and recommendations having informed the SALP.

This consultation asks specific questions required by the Planning Inspectorate, the body that checks that Local Plan documents have been prepared correctly. These questions are:

  • Is this Local Plan document legally compliant?
  • Is this Local Plan document sound?

At this final stage, your representations should relate to the soundness or legality of the submission document. Following this consultation on the submission SALP, the document and all representations made will be submitted to the Secretary of State with a view to an Examination being held in early summer 2017. Subject to the plan being deemed sound and legally compliant, it is anticipated that the document will be adopted in late 2017.

How to make comments

The SALP submission document and supporting documents can be viewed online at Once you have registered online on the council's consultation website, it is easy to make comments on any section of the document or the document as a whole. You can also view an interactive on-line version and download a PDF version of the whole document.  Hard copies of the documents are available to view at the council's offices in Mildenhall, Newmarket, Brandon and Bury St Edmunds.

To comply with Government guidance, and to help ensure that comments are submitted in a format that the Inspector examining the plan can readily use, your representations made in response to the SALP submission document must:

  • Identify the 'test of soundness' or legal requirement to which the representation relates.
  • State whether the document is considered sound or unsound. If unsound, an explanation should be provided as to how the document can be amended to make it sound.
  • State whether the issue has been raised at a previous consultation stage. If not, then the representation must explain why the issue had not been raised previously.

The tests of soundness are set out below and should be used as a basis for any comments made on this SALP submission document.

  • Positively prepared – the  plan should be prepared on a strategy which seeks to meet objectively assessed development and infrastructure requirements, including unmet requirements from neighbouring authorities where it is reasonable to do so and consistent with achieving sustainable development;
  • Justified – the policy should be the most appropriate strategy, when considered against the reasonable alternatives, based on proportionate evidence;
  • Effective – the policy should be deliverable over its period and based on effective joint working on cross-boundary strategic priorities; and
  • Consistent with national policy – the policy should enable the delivery of sustainable development in accordance with the policies within the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF, 2012).

A glossary to help explain some of the technical aspects is provided in the full glossary at Appendix A and in accompanying leaflets and consultation materials, available on the council's website at

We ask that responses are made online by visiting the council's public consultation website

Alternatively, written responses will be accepted and a paper response form can be obtained by telephoning 01284 757368 or emailing If you are submitting supporting information alongside a written response, please enclose three printed copies of this alongside your response.

Please return paper response forms/letters to:

Strategic Planning Team

Forest Heath District Council

West Suffolk House

Western Way

Bury St Edmunds

IP33 3YU

All responses must be returned by 5pm 21 February 2017

Please note that late responses will not be accepted.

Please be aware that any representations made on this document will be available for everyone to view, regardless of whether they are submitted by post or online.

If you wish to submit supporting material with your response it would be helpful if you can do so electronically and include a summary of the content within the question response.

Where there are groups who share a common view on an issue in the document, it would be helpful if that group could send in a single response indicating how many people it is representing and how the response has been authorised.

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