Consultation Document

7 Point for Clarification 2: Wincanton Housing Growth

Proposed Main Modification PMM7: Provision for review of housing requirement in the event of early build out of current proposed provision for Wincanton

7.1 This Proposed Main Modification arises from paragraphs 63 and 64 of the Inspectors Preliminary Findings, 3 July 2013.

Justification for Change:

7.2 During the Examination the Council proposed to insert two paragraphs into the Wincanton housing section. The proposed text explains that if housing provision needs to be supplemented in the event that current committed provision is built out early within the Plan period then the Council would undertake a priority review of the housing requirements and if necessary allocate further land for development.

7.3 The Inspector considers that without this important addition the Local Plan would not be justified as it relates to Wincanton, because it would not reflect an appropriate strategy for the town. It is therefore a proposed main modification requiring consultation.

Issue Summary:

7.4 Very little additional residential development (5 dwellings), above that which is already committed, is proposed for the Primary Market Town of Wincanton. The plan should be sufficiently flexible so that if housing provision needs to be supplemented, then a priority review can be undertaken including the allocation of further land if necessary.

Implication for Supporting Text:

7.5 The supporting text should make clear that the Council shall monitor housing growth in Wincanton and take appropriate action to supplement housing provision where required.

7.6 The Proposed Main Modification is presented in the table below (any new text is underlined and deleted text is shown as crossed through).

Proposed Main Modification
(NB shown in Core document 3c as Minor modification
It is important to sustain and enhance Wincanton’s role as a Market Town in the rural east of the District, with a level of development that is relative to the size, accessibility, character and environmental constraints of the town. When compared with other Market Towns, Wincanton already has a significant number of existing commitments with 698 dwellings having planning permission or already built as at April 2012. It is therefore recommended that at least 703 dwellings are built in the town over the Local plan period 2006-2028. This is to ensure housing growth reflects the scale of Wincanton and allows assimilation of significant past growth. As the majority of these dwellings have already been built or committed this leaves a residual additional housing requirement of only 5 dwellings. The past build out rates indicates that this overall level of provision should last the plan period. These dwellings could be accommodated within the existing Development Area.
The Market Town of Wincanton is different from the other Market Towns by virtue of its high level of commitments compared to the overall level of housing requirement considered appropriate for the settlement. As a consequence and given the expected build out rates set out in the housing trajectory, the latter years of the Plan offer limited levels of housing provision. It is considered likely given the front loading of development in Wincanton that the town will experience a subsequent period of assimilation of housing growth and slowing down of the local housing market. Should the housing market however remain locally strong and underpinned by employment growth then the housing provision would need to be supplemented. Such a circumstance would be possible to evidence through the Council’s on-going monitoring process. Should additional housing provision be needed, this would be achieved through a specific statutory Local Plan amendment relating to housing provision for Wincanton.
Issue 10
Officer editing
(following Inspector request)