The Corporate Director – Communities submitted a report, in order to seek Members approval to adopt SPG5 - Outdoor Recreation Facilities and New Housing Developments as Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) to the Bridgend Local Development Plan (LDP).
As part of some background information, the Strategic Planning Team Leader advised that recreational areas are vital for our health, well-being and amenity and contribute to an area’s green infrastructure. They provide a place for play, sport, healthy physical activity and relaxation often in the presence of nature.
The development of new housing in the County Borough, and the resulting population increase, creates a demand for the improvement of existing and provision of new recreational facilities, he confirmed.
The Strategic Planning Team Leader confirmed that SPG5 will act as a key tool in meeting that demand, by providing advice and guidance to developers on how the standards required by the Local Development Plan policy can be met.
In summary the SPG sets out:
· The national and local Planning Policy context to outdoor recreational provision;
· The Council’s policy and practice relating to recreational spaces;
· Guidance notes explaining the circumstances, mechanisms, types and amount of recreational space that will be sought on residential developments;
· Explanation of the circumstances where financial contributions towards recreational facilities may be sought;
· Encouragement for developers and prospective applicants to engage the Planning Department in pre-application discussions; and
· Guidance on how the policy will be administered.
On the 16 January 2020 the Development Control Committee approved a draft version of the SPG as the basis for public consultation; authorised officers to make appropriate arrangements for public consultation; and agreed to await a further report on the outcome of the consultation process.
A 6-week period of public consultation was held between 21 February and 3 April 2020. The consultation was advertised in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 4.2 of the report.
By the end of the consultation period nine representations were received on the draft SPG. These representations have been summarised in Appendix 1 to the report.
On 3 March 2022, the Development Control Committee considered all of the representations and agreed changes to be made to the document in light of the comments received. These were incorporated as amendments to the SPG attached at Appendix 2 of the report.
The Strategic Planning Team Leader stated that, Members will note from the bullet points at paragraph 4.4 of the report, that the proposed amendments are limited to relatively simple points of clarification and he added that this reflected the amount of work that went into the draft SPG in the first place. He acknowledged the input of the Mayor in this, who has called for the introduction of this SPG for a number of years and his personal and professional input had been invaluable and ensured that all County Borough Members have had a voice in the process.
The Officer concluded his submission, by adding that the SPG expands upon the existing land-use planning policy framework contained within the LDP, giving the public and developers certainty in the Council’s expectations in relation to achieving an appropriate level of Outdoor Recreation Facilities which will serve new residential development.
Members asked questions on the report, that were responded to by the Corporate Director – Communities and Officers from the Council’s Planning Department following which, it was
RESOLVED: That Council :
1. Adopted SPG 5 – Outdoor Recreation Facilities and New Housing Development (Appendix 2 to the report) as Supplementary Planning Guidance to the adopted Bridgend Local Development Plan.
2. Authorised the Group Manager Planning and Development Services to make minor presentational amendments prior to publishing the SPG on the Council’s website.