Work on a strategy that will guide the scale and location of new development in the county has begun, Powys County Council has announced.
Cllr Jake Berriman, Cabinet Member for a Connected Powys, made the announcement at a reception held at Tŵr Brycheiniog on the last day of the Royal Welsh Show (Thursday, 21 July).
The council has started a three-and-a-half-year process to prepare a new development plan which will cover all of Powys, excluding the Brecon Beacons National Park.
The current Local Development Plan (2011-2026) is used by the council to guide and manage development, providing a basis by which planning applications are determined.
The Replacement Local Development Plan (2022-2037) will be drawn up to take effect from March 2026 when the current Local Development Plan ends.
The council has now published its Delivery Agreement which includes a Community Involvement Scheme, and a timetable for preparing and adopting the Replacement Local Development Plan.
The agreement, which was approved by the Welsh Government last month (June) also explains the stages the council will follow as well as explaining how developers, the public and other interested groups can take part in the development of the plan.
“As a qualified Town Planner, whose first managerial role was served at the former Radnorshire District Council back in the early 1990’s, it is a privilege to now be in a position to oversee the production of Powys’s Replacement Local Development Plan,” said Cllr Berriman.
“Whilst there is always a lot of understandable interest in the determination of individual planning applications, it is the Local Development Plan that establishes the context, strategic direction, tone and thrust of the Policies which will guide those individual decisions.
“It is crucial, therefore, for developers, Town and Community Councils, Local Interest Groups and individuals to exercise their rights to have their voices heard in drawing up this exciting new plan.
“A plan for the future which will, I hope, continue to set the appropriate policy context to embrace the very real challenges we face over the climate and ecological emergencies, facilitate the construction of affordable homes, boost the vibrancy of our town centres and strengthen our rural communities.”
One of the most important early stages of the process will be the call for potential development sites, known as the ‘Candidate Sites Stage’, which is scheduled for this Autumn.
Alongside gathering evidence on land needs and requirements, the council will be developing a Preferred Strategy for the Replacement Local Development Plan, which will be widely consulted upon in May/June 2023.
The Delivery Agreement can be viewed online at Planning Policy and clicking Replacement Local Development Plan (2022-2037). It can also be viewed at the following libraries:
Brecon, Builth Wells, Llandrindod Wells, Llanfyllin, Llanidloes, Llanwrtyd Wells, Machynlleth, Newtown, Presteigne, Rhayader, Welshpool and Ystradgynlais.
As well as publishing the Delivery Agreement on the website, the council has included a link to the Welsh Government’s ‘Development Plans Community Guide’ – a useful and helpful resource for communities and interested parties to assist understanding of the development plan process in Wales.