South Somerset Local Plan Review 2016-2036 Preferred Options Consultation (Regulation 18)

Comment ID 356
Document Section South Somerset Local Plan Review 2016-2036 Preferred Options Consultation (Regulation 18) Market Towns Primary Market Towns – Chard Text Block View all on this section
Respondent Barry James PHSW View all by this respondent
Response Date 19 Aug 2019

PHSW supports the continuing commitment to the Chard Eastern Development Area as the most appropriate location for growth in Chard, given the many
benefits it provides to the town. 

The adopted Local Plan Policy PMT1 stated:
Land at Chard is allocated for strategic growth to provide the following within the plan period and beyond:
• At least 2,716 dwellings;
• Approximately 13 hectares of employment land;
• 2 new primary schools;
• 4 neighbourhood centres (Avishayes, Stop Line Slopes, Millfields
and Holbear);
• Highway infrastructure and improvements;
• Sports and open space provision.

The adopted Plan also contained Policy PMT2 relating to the phasing of development, setting out what would be developed up to 2028, and what was
expected between 2028 and the end of the Plan period, the intention being that phasing should be justified and not compromise the total delivery of the planned

The proposed Policy CH1 states:
Land at Chard is allocated for strategic growth to provide the following
during the period 2016 to 2036:
• About 1,342 dwellings, including 29% affordable housing;
• Approximately 13.5 hectares of employment land;
• One new primary school;
• Two neighbourhood centres (Millfields and Holbear);
• Highway infrastructure and improvements; and
• Sports and open space provision.
• ii. In order to ensure the timely delivery of the necessary infrastructure to support the growth, phasing sequences should be justified and it should be demonstrated that the proposal will not compromise the delivery of the total growth.

PHSW supports this policy and expects the District Council to be protective of its strategic focus in Chard, which is based on significant evidence and delivers multiple benefits, and SSDC should strongly resist developments elsewhere which will impact negatively upon the existing infrastructure and the ability of delivering the CEDA development.

In addition, given the importance of the highway infrastructure improvements that will be generated all developers/land interests should contribute
proportionately towards that infrastructure and that the Council ensure that during negotiations there is a mechanism for fair recompense where a developer
loses land to infrastructure that others within the CEDA area benefit from.

It is important that timely decisions are made on the back of adopted policy for all concerned, and PHSW is hopeful that the sentiments in Policy SD1 and
elsewhere in the Plan relating to a positive and proactive approach to delivering development. The time taken to get planning consent on PHSW’s first phase has
been very unfortunate and has impacted upon the business’s delivery of housing in this area and it is hoped this will be avoided in future.

PHSW notes and is grateful for the amendment made to the IM1 allocation area, including the entirety of the known development area, since the initial plan was
reported to the District Executive on the 7th February 2019. 

Ilminster is in a strategic and sustainable location for development. Whilst there has been considerable opposition to development to the east, and there are
constraints that can reduce developable areas (landscape impact, flood zones) it should be seen as a location ripe for further development given its locational and
infrastructural benefits. Further development in this sustainable location should be considered, and early engagement with developers as part of a
SHLAA/HELAA process to discuss bringing land forward/delivery.