National and local planning policies aim to guide future development. A broad range of policies must take be taken into account when preparing a planning application, development brief, or master plan. These policies cover a wide range of topics including economy, tourism, recreation, shopping, health and safety, housing, waste, transport, built and historic environment and the natural environment. Policies can be supported locally by more detailed ‘supplementary planning documents’.
Planning law requires that applications for planning permission must be determined in accordance with the local development plan, unless ‘material considerations’, (which can include Government Policy, noise, design and appearance) indicate otherwise. Consequently when determining a proposal a great many judgments have to be made about the relevance and relative priority of different policy issues.
Be aware that policy at both national and local levels changes, so do not assume this section is up-to- date. Locally, Bath and North East Somerset Council’s Local Plan will be replaced with a Local Development Framework including a new Core Strategy setting out the Council’s priorities for the next ten years.
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