New local plan 2016 - 2036

Local Plan Inspector's Report and Modifications

Following an independent examination by the Planning Inspectorate of the Darlington Local Plan 2016 – 2036, the council received the Inspector's report on 28 January 2022.

The appointed Inspector, Mr William Fieldhouse BA (Hons) MA MRTPI, concluded that with the recommended main modifications (consulted on between 19 October and 30 November 2021), the Darlington Local Plan 2016 - 2036 is sound and compliant with the legal requirements.

Further details can be seen on the Local Plan examination page.

Notice of consultation on the Darlington local plan proposed modifications - consultation now closed

The Inspector conducting the examination of the Darlington Local Plan has concluded that Main Modifications are required to make the plan sound.

A schedule of proposed Main Modifications has been prepared which is to be the subject of consultation.

The Main Modifications are proposed without prejudice to the Inspectors’ final conclusions on the plan, which will take into account all of the representations submitted in response to this consultation.

In addition to the proposed Main Modifications, comments are invited on the following:

The consultation runs from:

Tuesday 19 October 2021 until 5pm on Tuesday 30 November 2021

Further information can be see on the Local Plan Examination page or at the consultation portal.


Previous information

Notification of Darlington Local Plan Public Examination and Start of Hearing Sessions

The Council submitted the Darlington Local Plan to the Secretary of State for formal public examination on 22 December 2020.

As part of the examination, public hearings are being held to assess its legal compliance and ‘soundness’.

This includes whether the Plan has been positively prepared, is justified, is effective and is consistent with national policy. 

The hearings commenced on Tuesday 25 May and ran until Thursday 24 June 2021.

Due to uncertainties about coronavirus legislation and guidance at the time, and related capacity issues at Darlington Town Hall, the hearing sessions were held virtually, using Microsoft Teams. All of the sessions were broadcast on YouTube. 

Mr William Fieldhouse BA(Hons) MA MRTPI has been appointed to conduct the examination. 

For any contact with the Inspector, or for queries relating to the hearings, please contact the appointed Programme Officer, who is an independent officer for the examination working under the Inspector’s direction. 

Mrs Liz Sheard, Darlington Local Plan Programme Officer
Darlington Borough Council, Town Hall, Feethams, Darlington, DL1 5QT
Tel: 01325 406656
Email: [email protected]

If you have requested to appear at a hearing session additional information is set out in the Inspector’s letter and guidance notes provided via the Programme Officer.

All updates about the Local Plan Examination process, timetable and other relevant information are available on the Local Plan Examination webpage.

If you wish to speak to an Planning Officer about the Local Plan and its examination, please contact the Planning Policy Team 01325 406724, or by email at [email protected].

Submission of Local Plan to the Secretary of State

The Council submitted the Darlington Local Plan to the Secretary of State for formal public examination on 22 December 2020.

Proposed Submission Local Plan (Regulation 19) - August 2020

The Proposed Submission Local Plan (Regulation 19) representation period will run from Thursday 6 August 2020 for 6 weeks until 5pm on Thursday 17 September 2020.

For further details, including how you can make comments, please visit the Proposed Submission Local Plan webpage [external link].

Local Plan preparation process to restart - August 2020

With the ongoing relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions the council are now looking to restart the Local Plan preparation process.

With this in mind we are aiming to publish the Proposed Submission Plan (Regulation 19) for a statutory representation period of 6 weeks commencing early August.

Precise details will be confirmed in due course and are subject to change in line with Government guidance relating to COVID-19.  Further information can be found on our Local Plan website [external link].

Darlington Borough Local Plan 2016-2036 - Consultation on the Draft Darlington Local Plan, Draft Policies Map and Draft Sustainability Appraisal

The Consultation on the above documents has now ended.

Thank you to all those who have submitted comments and attended our consultation events.

Your comments are now being processed and reviewed.

The next stage will be a report to Members with recommendations based on the comments received.

This is anticipated to happen in the New Year, with dates to be confirmed. Further information can be found on our Local Plan website [external link].

Local Plan Microsite

The Council has launched its new Local Plan Microsite [external link] to keep you up to date about what's happening on the progress of the new Darlington Local Plan.

Darlington Local Plan 2016-2036 – Consultation on Draft Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report

The Consultation on the Draft Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report has now ended.  Thank you for all of your comments, which are currently being considered.  We hope to publish more information on the next steps in the New Year.

You can still view the Draft SA Scoping Report here ‘Darlington Local Plan 2016-2036 - Draft Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report’ [pdf document] and this document is also available to view in paper form on request at the Customer Contact centre at the Town Hall, Darlington, or at any of the Borough’s libraries.

Additional information can also be seen on the Local Plan microsite

The New Local Plan 2016-2036

A new 20 year Darlington Local Plan 2016-2036 is being prepared for the whole Borough.

Once adopted, it will be the development plan for all matters except minerals and waste.

It will replace the existing adopted Darlington Local Development Framework Core Strategy (2011) [pdf document], and saved policies of the Borough of Darlington Local Plan

Although the Consultation on the Issues and Scoping Consultation has ended, you can continue to view the Strategic Issues and Scoping Paper for the New Local Plan [pdf document] here.

Further information and the comments made to the consultation can be seen on our microsite

Withdrawal of the draft Making and Growing Places DPD

To enable work to start on the comprehensive new local plan, Members have formally withdrawn the draft Making and Growing Places Development Plan Document. The Statement of Withdrawal can be viewed here [pdf document].

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