Inspectors to publicly review council’s housing plan setting out sites for 12,551 homes

By Andrew Topping, Local Democracy Reporter

The Government’s planning inspectorate will publicly examine Bassetlaw District Council’s draft housing plan setting out where 12,551 homes could be built.

The housing document sets out where developments will be built until 2038 and also sets out policies to be used when deciding on new projects.

It also reveals where employment space can be created and what infrastructure is needed across the district to support economic growth.

The Labour-led authority submitted the plan to the Government in July and the Planning Inspectorate has appointed two inspectors to assess it.

These inspectors will now carry out an independent review of the plan, assess its supporting evidence and review comments in previous consultations.

The authority expects to adopt the document in 2023, providing it is accepted by the inspectors.

Now the council has confirmed inspectors will hold a number of hearings between November 29 and December 15.

The events will allow the public to view how the plan is assessed and give residents the chance to speak to inspectors about elements of the plan.

Only people who have previously responded to consultations will be invited to be part of the discussion.

If the planning inspector reveals changes need to be made to the plan, a further consultation would be held next summer.

Events will take place at Worksop Town Hall from 9.30am between November 30 and December 2, between December 7-9 and between December 13-15.

There will also be an event at Retford Town Hall from 9.30am on December 6.

David Armiger is the authority’s chief executive.

He said: “The examination process and the public hearings are an opportunity for the inspectors to hear all sides of the debate and take an independent view.

“All councils are required to have an up-to-date Local Plan by December 2023 and this is one of the final parts of the process.

“The inspectors’ leadership of these hearings guarantee a comprehensive and unbiased examination process.

“The public is able to attend any of the sessions and can confirm their attendance in advance.”

The inspectors will review a 243-page plan that reveals 10,476 homes, or 582 properties per year, need to be built across Bassetlaw by 2038.

However, the authority expects its total growth in homes could be as high as 12,551 during this period.

It says about 2,719 homes will be built on the outskirts of Worksop, with 725 planned in central Worksop.

This will be met through 1,114 homes in previously-approved planning applications and 360 homes completed between April 2020 and March 2022.

A further 1,970 homes are allocated in the plan for Worksop, including 1,080 at Peaks Hill Farm and 20 at the former Bassetlaw Pupil Referral Centre site.

Other Worksop allocations include 120 homes on Radford Street, 100 on the former Manton Primary School and 15 on Talbot Road.

A further 2,272 homes are planned in Retford during the plan period, including 715 homes from existing planning permissions and 225 completed homes.

The authority has outlined 1,332 further homes through allocated sites across Retford, including 305 homes at Trinity Farm and 890 in Ordsall South.

A further five are planned in Milnercroft, with 46 on the former Elizabethan School, 20 in St Michael’s View, 61 in Fairy Grove and five on Station Road.

Harworth and Bircotes will take 2,199 homes, though no new allocations have been made due to 2,006 existing homes committed in the area.

This includes about 1,300 homes allocated on the Harworth Colliery Site, with at least 1,133 properties deliverable by 2038.

There are also 1,063 homes with existing planning permission in large rural settlements, with a further 1,053 in smaller rural settlements.

And 736 homes have already been completed in both large and small rural developments since April 2020.

The authority hopes Bassetlaw will be a “vibrant, prosperous place” which provides residents with a “high quality of life” when the plan period ends.

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