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Joint Core Strategy Issues and Key Questions

Foreword

In 2008, the Councils of Gloucester City, Cheltenham Borough and Tewkesbury Borough decided to prepare a Joint Core Strategy. This will have many benefits to planning a sustainable future for all three Council areas.

This consultation document is the first stage in producing the Joint Core Strategy and has regard to the Regional Spatial Strategy for the South West - Secretary of State's Proposed Changes. The Regional Spatial Strategy for the South West has still not been formally published. The Government advises that the Regional Spatial Strategy for the South West - Secretary of State's Proposed Changes should be used as a material planning consideration in the planning process when considering applications for proposals contained within it. The development industry therefore may not wait for the Government to publish the Regional Spatial Strategy and the Planning Inspectorate is likely to come under pressure to make decisions on planning appeals in advance of its publication.

Gloucester City, Cheltenham Borough and Tewkesbury Borough have various significant objections to key aspects of the Regional Spatial Strategy for the South West, particularly in relation to unjustified urban extensions and unnecessary incursion into the countryside and Green Belt arising from its proposals for increased growth to unprecedented levels. Although the three Councils remain opposed to the conclusions contained in the Regional Spatial Strategy, as does the County Council, they feel it is vital to put plans in place to help to secure proper infrastructure should applications come forward for proposals within the Regional Spatial Strategy for the South West.

It is also necessary, for the good planning of the area, to ensure that an up-to-date development plan is in place to guide future sustainable development and safeguard environmental, social, economic and other key interests. The County Council is supportive of the partnership and is keen to ensure that any long term infrastructure requirements are addressed. It is leading on the development of a programme of potential infrastructure options.

In publishing this document the three Councils are inviting local communities and stakeholders to present their views and engage fully in the process of preparing the joint development plan.



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