Winchester City Council publishes next stage of Local Plan.

Winchester City Council has today (26 January 2006) published the next stage of the emerging District Local Plan, the document that sets out the development framework for the district until 2011.

The document identifies the changes that the Council intends to make to the emerging Winchester District Local Plan Review (WDLPR) after receiving the Inspectors Report into the Public Inquiry for the Plan last September.

The Public Inquiry was held between 8 June 2004 and 17 March 2005, and the council received the Inspector's Report in September 2005.

The most significant change is the introduction of four Local Reserve Housing Sites, at: Pitt Manor, Winchester; Francis Gardens/Worthy Rd, Winchester; Spring Gardens, New Alresford; and Little Frenchies Field, Denmead.

The Inspector considered nearly 200 sites promoted by development interests. After detailed consideration, he selected these four sites as being the most suitable as a reserve if insufficient housing developments come forward to meet the Council's housing delivery targets set by the Hampshire County Structure Plan. The council is also consulting on the mechanism by which these sites would be triggered.

Regarding the four sites, Cllr John Beveridge, Portfolio Holder for Planning said: "The council understands the Inspectors' precautionary approach in identifying the four sites, but welcomes the control given by their reserve status. Decisions about the timing and choice of the release of any of the four sites will be taken by the Council in consultation with local people. We will rigorously monitor the housing completions within the District so that any of these sites will only be released for development after a period of public consultation and it is clear that their release is necessary to meet our housing targets."

The Proposed Modifications document is out for consultation for a 6-week period, and comments are invited on it by Thursday 9 March 2006. Two supplementary consultations accompany the Proposed Modifications document. The first relates to the mechanism by which the four Local Reserve Housing Sites might be triggered, the second relates to the councils approach to small-scale housing developments that would add to existing developed areas outside the defined settlements. Comments on these documents are also invited by Thursday 9 March 2006.

Copies of the three documents are on the council's website  and can be viewed at council offices and public libraries, or can be purchase on request to the Planning Directorate, Avalon house, Chesil Street, Winchester S023 0HU, Tel 01962 840 222.