On 6th April 2022, the HM Government's Inspectors initial questions were published by Mole Valley District Council in the Examination documents on the Future Mole Valley website with the deadline for responses by the Council by 5pm on Friday 22nd April.
Residents should note the observation from HM Inspectors in paragraphs 22 on Housing and 23 on Green Belt which are a major concern to residents.
At this stage we do not know whether these questions are the normal clarification requests posed by an Inspector or whether they are more significant. We will be trying to understand better over the coming days.
Inspectors Roisin Barrett BSc (Hons) MSc MRTPI IHBC and Beverley Wilders BA (Hons) PgDurp MRTPI from the Planning Inspectorate have been appointed by the Secretary of State to carry out the independent Examination of the Local Plan.
The Inspectors’ task is to consider the soundness of the submitted Plan (paragraph 35 of the National Planning Policy Framework July 2021) and whether it has been prepared in accordance with the legal and procedural requirements. Plans are sound if they are:
Positively prepared – providing a strategy which, as a minimum, seeks to meet the area’s objectively assessed needs; and is informed by agreements with other authorities, so that unmet need from neighbouring areas is accommodated where it is practical to do so and is consistent with achieving sustainable development;
Justified – an appropriate strategy, taking into account the reasonable alternatives, and based on proportionate evidence;
Effective – deliverable over the plan period, and based on effective joint working on cross-boundary strategic matters that have been dealt with rather than deferred, as evidenced by the statement of common ground; and
Consistent with national policy – enabling the delivery of sustainable development in accordance with the policies in this Framework and other statements of national planning policy, where relevant.