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Public’s views sought on final changes to Eden Local Plan 2014-2032

Eden Local Plan 2014-2032 logoThe public are being asked to give their views on the Main Modifications to the Draft Eden Local Plan 2014-2032, which having been examined in public by a government appointed Planning Inspector, is now in its final public consultation stage starting on Monday 10 July 2017, prior to adoption as formal planning policy.

Once adopted, the Eden Local Plan will be the principal planning document for determining planning application in the District until 2032 (next 15 years). It will be the blue print for where new homes can be built and jobs created through designated housing and employment sites.

Following the Public Inquiry in May 2016, Public Examination Hearing Sessions were held in September 2016 and May 2017, by the government appointed Planning inspector to consider the soundness of the Draft Eden Local Plan.

A series of proposed Main Modifications have been made to Plan to ensure that it can be considered ‘sound’ (justified, effective and consistent with National Planning Policy) prior to this final consultation.

The proposed main modification to the Draft Eden Local Plan largely revolve around the required increase in housing development over the plan period (2014-2032). The consultation is based on:

  • The methodology as to how the housing requirement was increased
  • How the increase was distributed
  • How the wording of the respective basic policies have been amended as below:

Annual build rate for new houses

  • This been raised from 200 dwellings per year to 242. Overall this increases the development rate from 3,600 to 4,356 across Eden from 2014-2032 and is distributed proportionally between the Main Towns (69%), the Key Hubs (20%) and the smaller Villages and Hamlets (11%).

Housing targets for main towns

  • Penrith’s housing target has increased from 1,800 to 2,178 (50% of the requirement) and takes the major share as the most sustainable area for growth.
  • Alston’s housing target has dropped from 144 to 131 (from 4% to 3% of the requirement) reflecting the town’s low historic trend of development.
  • Appleby’s housing target has increased from 324 to 392 (9% of the requirement) reflecting its size and status.
  • Kirkby Stephen’s housing target has increased from 252 to 305 (7% of the requirement). 

Key Hubs

  • The Key Hubs housing target has increased from 720 to 871 (20% of the requirement).
  • The distribution strategy has changed to have 13 key Hubs as opposed to the originally proposed 28. The Key Hubs still have to take 20% of the housing requirement, the scale of development is now distributed between fewer Key Hubs, so each Key Hub now accommodates more housing.
  • Housing sites have now been allocated in the Key Hubs and are the focus for development to sustain local services appropriate to the scale of the village and their hinterland, including new housing, the provision of employment and improvements to accessibility.
  • Unless proposed in this plan, new housing developments which would increase the size of a village by more than 10% on a single site will not normally be supported. Proposals will only be acceptable where they respect the historic character and form of the village.
  • The Key Hubs are: Armathwaite, Brough and Church Brough, Culgaith, Greystoke, High and Low Hesket, Kirkby Thore, Langwathby, Lazonby, Nenthead, Plumpton, Shap, Stainton and Tebay,

Smaller Villages and Hamlets

  • The housing target has increased from 360 to 479 (and has been increased from 20% to 21% of the requirement – this is the 1% taken from Alston). The 15 Villages original proposed to be Key Hubs have now been re-designated as ‘Smaller Villages and Hamlets and there are now 102 Smaller Villages and Hamlets. 
  • Within these settlements, no sites have been allocated and development will be limited to small scale, sensitive development will be allowed to help meet local demand, providing it is limited to infill or ‘rounding off’ development only. Proposals of more than four units will be expected to provide some affordable housing for local occupancy.

Future Growth Sites

  • Sites which could add flexibility to the supply of housing, have been allocated both in the main towns and in some of the Key Hubs and can be released for development if there is a continued under delivery of housing in specified areas and under specified criteria.

Affordable Housing

  • The requirement to provide for affordable housing and financial contributions towards affordable housing has been amended to accord with recent changes in regulations.

Employment Land

  • An addition area of 0.70 hectares of employment land has been allocated at Kirkby Stephen Business Park.

In addition to the Proposed Main Modifications, the Council has updated three key pieces of evidence, namely its Sustainability Appraisal, Habitats Regulations Assessment and the 5 year housing land supply. These reports will be published alongside the Proposed Main Modifications together with a number of background documents. All of these documents will be available to view and download from the Council’s website: from 9am on Monday 10 July 2017.

Eden District Council’s Planning Policy Manager, Kevin Hutchinson, said: “We are hopefully at the final consultation stage prior to adopting our Eden Local Plan. Once adopted, the Plan will be the key piece of planning policy that will shape how the Eden District develops over the next 15 years. 

“National Planning Policy Framework confirms that ‘Planning law requires that applications for planning permission must be determined in accordance with the development plan. The Eden Local Plan will be our development plan against which new development proposals will be considered.

“We have worked hard during the Public Inquiry and the two rounds of subsequent hearings to address the concerns of the various interested parties and now feel confident that we now have a ‘sound’ plan. In this final consultation, we can only focus on the Main Modifications which essentially revolve around the required increase in housing development over the plan period and we are encouraging the public to give us the views on how our proposals address this issue.”

Representations may only be made in respect of the effect of the Proposed Main Modifications on the Plan’s soundness or legal compliance and not on other parts of the Plan. All comments must be received in writing by 9am on Monday 21 August 2017 and will be submitted to the Local Plan Inspector appointed by the Secretary of State. The Inspector may decide to hold additional hearing sessions in light of comments received.

Consultation documents and response forms are also be made available at Council Offices in Penrith as well as at the following Local Links and Libraries across the district:

  • Alston Local Link
  • Appleby Library
  • Kirkby Stephen Local Link
  • Lazonby Co-op (Library Link)
  • Penrith Library
  • Shap Library Link

The Council will be informing directly all statutory consultees, Parish and Town Councils and members of the public who have previously expressed an interest in the Local Plan (some 1,744 in all) by both post and email of the Main Modifications consultation.

Please contact the Council’s Planning Policy Team if you need to request a response form to be sent to you by post. All response forms should be sent either:

  • By email to:
  • By post to: Planning Policy Team, Eden District Council, Mansion House, Penrith, Cumbria, CA11 7YG.

Community Engagement Events

Eden District Council will be holding five community engagement events across the District in Penrith Town Hall, Appleby, Kirkby Stephen, Alston and Skelton during the six week consultation period and are inviting all Parish and Town Councils to send representatives so they be better able to understand the implications of the Local Plan prior to responding to the Consultation.

Eden District Council’s Planning Policy Manager, Kevin Hutchinson, added: “Although directed at Parish and Town Councils, members of the public are welcome to attend the event nearest to them and anyone interested merely needs to contact their local Parish Councillor for contact details. ACT (ACTion with Communities in Cumbria) are assisting with this and will be contacting Parish and Town Councils.

“The Council are committed to these engagement events and have taken the opportunity to widen the scope of the meetings to include additional items which we feel sure will be of interest to those involved and will include discussion on”:

  • Neighbourhood and Community Planning
  • Eden Local Plan Main Modifications Consultation update (commencing 10 July 2017 for six weeks)
  • Affordable Housing
  • Housing Need and Demand
  • Community Housing Fund
  • Development Management update

If you have any questions or queries in relation to the Eden Local Plan 2014-2032, please contact a member of the Planning Policy Team telephone: 01768 817817 or email: