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An independent inspector has approved the Conservative-led Wiltshire Council’s strategy which will see controlled and appropriate development in the south of the county with a focus on creating jobs.
The council revised the strategy after the new Conservative Coaltion government, last year, announced its intention to revoke Labour’s regional spatial strategies - binding housing figures from central government.
This has now freed Wiltshire Council to revise the housing numbers for Wiltshire based on evidence including feedback from extensive public consultation. For South Wiltshire this meant a reduction from 12,400 to 9,900 new homes by 2026, of which around 3,400 have already been built or have planning permission.
Cabinet member with responsibility for economic regeneration and spatial planning Fleur de Rhe Philipe (Cons) said: “Unlike many local authorities, when the Government announced its intention to abolish regional spatial strategies we took the decision to move forward, work with local people and submit a revised plan – we were determined to have a clear plan in place which allows appropriate growth where it is needed. The Inspector’s report shows the council’s decision to continue to plan positively was the right one.
“We shall continue to work with communities to support businesses, help create jobs and provide homes, ensuring development is managed so Wiltshire’s beautiful countryside is protected. This strategy will enable south Wiltshire’s communities to remain vibrant places to live and work.”