The South Somerset Local Plan Review 2016-2036 Preferred Options Consultation (Regulation 18) has been published today, with consultation running from now to 18 September.
Its proposed housing target is based on the new Government methodology and the 2014-based household projections, so for South Somerset this means 716 dwellings per annum (no major difference from the 725dpa target in the adopted plan).
However the plan does include a change in the settlement hierarchy with a new class “village” identified, slotting in between rural centres and settlements. Stoke sub Hamdon has been ‘down-graded’ from a rural centre to a village whilst 11 of the rural settlements have been ‘up-graded’, including places like Queen Camel, Sparkford and North Cadbury. All of these “will” have provision made some development, with a target of 60 dwellings per village (in addition to the 120 dwellings already completed between 2016-2018 and 470 already permitted across the 12 villages). Exactly how this growth will be managed is not clear, as no allocations or settlement boundaries are proposed, the plan simply states that “growth is expected to take place adjacent to the existing built settlement”
Lots more for those communities to digest over the coming weeks…