Christine Milstead reports
The Examination of the Mole Valley Local Plan is underway. It is divided into three Stages and began with Stage 1 on the 22nd June 2022 which examined the Plan’s Legal & Procedural Requirements; has the Plan been prepared with due regard to the appropriate legislation, procedures and regulations.
The Inspector, Ms R Barrett, has subsequently announced that the Examination can proceed to Stage 2, provided additional studies to assess the Plan’s impacts on the M25, junction 9a, including the identification of any mitigation requirements. She expects the council to submit an agreed Statement of Common Ground with National Highways in August 2022. This critical evidence underpins the delivery of the Plan.
Stage 2 Hearings are now deferred until 27th September and Stage 3 begins on the 11th October. Six weeks before each Stage, the Inspector sets out the Matters, Issues & Questions (MIQs) which are the main issues she has identified taking into account of the views of the Council and other representors. Qualifying participants, those who have submitted a representation to Regulation 19, are invited to respond and attend the hearings. The BRA are playing an active role in this process, along with “Bookham Needs You” (BNY) and “BAM” which are local groups fighting to save Bookham’s Green Belt.
Bookham residents may be interested in the Matter 3: Green Belt Hearing which is on the 28th September. It debates the Green Belt boundary alterations and also examines the council’s methodology for releasing Green Belt land for development. And Matter 11: Site Allocations Bookham on Tuesday 25th October is when the development sites at Preston Farm and Hunters Moon will be examined.
If you wish to follow the progress of the Plan, log on to the Future Mole Valley link via the button below to access the Examination Documents. To watch the live hearings or recordings at your leisure, log onto the webcast library.