The Cheltenham Plan

Work has begun on a new plan for Cheltenham. The Cheltenham Plan is a new planning document to guide development in the local area and it will be used in combination with the Joint Core Strategy for Gloucester, Cheltenham and Tewkesbury.

The Cheltenham Plan is being delivered into two distinct parts; part one is being delivered ahead of part two. Each part will comprise of distinct planning topics, these include:

  • Part one: An economy strategy and policies, local green space designations and policies and the allocation of future development sites in the town; and
  • Part two: Heritage and conservation areas, retailing, urban green environment, natural environment, culture and recreation, housing standards and countryside policies.

Public consultations 

We have undertaken two public consultations on the Cheltenham Plan to date.

Why produce the Cheltenham Plan?

The Localism Act and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) have brought about major changes to the planning system and reintroduced the term ‘Local Plan’. The NPPF states that each local planning authority (LPA) should produce a Local Plan for its area, based upon, the presumption in favour of sustainable development, with clear policies that will guide how the presumption should be applied. The current planning policies for Cheltenham are contained in the Cheltenham Borough Local Plan Second Review. In future this will be replaced by two main policy docuemts: the Joint Core Strategy and the Cheltenham Plan.

Cheltenham’s existing policies

Cheltenham Borough Local Plan Adopted 2006 (Saved policies) and associated supplementary planning guidance (SPGs)/supplementary planning documents(SPDs) and development briefs. Whilst existing saved policies and SPGs/SPDs remain the starting point for decision making, the amount of weight that can be attributed to these policies will vary and, in the most part, will diminish over time. It is therefore essential to produce new, up-to-date plans based on objectively assessed evidence to ensure that development within Cheltenham is ‘plan-led’ rather than ‘appeal-led’.

Joint Core Strategy (JCS)

Work is ongoing on the Gloucester, Cheltenham and Tewkesbury Joint Core Strategy (JCS) which will provide the strategic planning framework for the area. The exact content of the JCS is yet to be agreed however it is likely to cover the strategic housing (including gypsy and travellers), employment and infrastructure requirements across the JCS area. A new Cheltenham Plan will be able to address the more detailed local policies, non-strategic allocations, local infrastructure issues and development management policies relevant to Cheltenham.

What is the Cheltenham Plan?

The Cheltenham Plan is a planning policy document covering Cheltenham borough and will form part of Cheltenham’s new ‘Local Plan’ in accordance with the Town and Country Planning (Local Planning) (England) Regulations 2012 and the NPPF.

A new Cheltenham Plan will be able to address the more detailed local policies, non-strategic allocations, local infrastructure issues and development management policies relevant to Cheltenham.

The Cheltenham Plan will need to be consistent with the JCS and the NPPF.