Decision details

Adoption of Darlington Borough Local Plan 2016/36

Decision Maker: Cabinet, Council

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


Report to request adoption of the Local Plan.


The Cabinet Member with the Economy Portfolio introduced the report of the Chief Executive (previously circulated) providing Members with an update on the process undertaken in the preparation of the Borough of Darlington Local Plan 2016/36 (Darlington Local Plan); the conclusions and recommendations of the report received from the Planning Inspector (also previously circulated) appointed to undertake the examination of the Local Plan which identified that the Local Plan, subject to recommended Main Modifications, is sound, legally compliant and capable of adoption; and informing Members of the statutory procedures for the adoption of the Local Plan, following which there is a six-week period when it can be challenged in the High Court under section 113 of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004.


The submitted report stated that all Local Planning Authorities were required to prepare a Local Plan that set out the local planning policies for their local planning authority area; an up-to-date Local Plan was essential to meet the development needs of the Borough and to enable the Council to shape and maintain control of development; the Local Plan was a framework for growth and aimed to ensure that Darlington would become an even more sustainable location in which people increasingly chose to live, work and visit; and that as well as delivering the economic strategy, it also made provision for new housing and infrastructure to meet local needs of the current and future population.


It was reported that the success of the Borough was predicated on growth and underpinned the future vibrancy of the town centre and local communities; the Local Plan set out how Darlington would grow, adapt and change and importantly how this would be achieved and managed; and provided the Council with the required spatial guidance and direction to contribute to and enable the structured development of the Borough, in support of both the Council’s drive for a growing economy, building stronger communities and creating opportunities for all whilst mitigating and adapting to climate change, protecting and enhancing the environment, heritage and green infrastructure.


References were made to the Local Plan preparation process, including key milestones; the two public consultations that had been undertaken; the appointment of the Planning Inspector; the public hearings held as part of the examination process; the main modifications identified by the Inspector; a number of other additional modifications identified through the consultation process; the adoption process; monitoring of the Local Plan; and the financial and legal implications of its adoption.


Particular references were made at the meeting to the timescales involved; the development of masterplans; impact on communities; and the importance of having a sound local plan in place to ensure that any development is right for Darlington and is sustainable.  The Cabinet Member with the Economy Portfolio responded thereon.


RESOLVED – (a)  That the conclusions of the Report on the Examination of the Darlington Local Plan received from the Planning Inspectorate, as detailed at Appendix 1 of the submitted report, be noted, which recommended that, subject to modifications, the Local Plan be adopted.


(b)  That it be recommended to Council that the Darlington Local Plan, attached at Appendix 3 of the submitted report, including all modifications detailed in Appendices 1 and 2 of the submitted report, and the Policies Map, attached at Appendix 4 of the submitted report, including modifications detailed in Appendix 5 of the submitted report, be adopted.


(c)  That the Core Strategy (2010) policies and saved Local Plan (1997, alterations 2001) policies, be superseded, upon the adoption of the Darlington Local Plan.


REASON - Local Planning Authorities must prepare a Local Plan that sets out the local planning policies for their local planning authority area.  Government guidance requires that Local Plans must be positively prepared, justified, effective and be consistent with national policy, in accordance with Section 20 of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 (as amended) and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

Report author: Barbara Strickland

Publication date: 11/02/2022

Date of decision: 08/02/2022

Decided at meeting: 08/02/2022 - Cabinet

Effective from: 19/02/2022

Accompanying Documents: