Rochdale Borough Council has withdrawn its Core Strategy from the examination process after an inspector raised concerns over the "soundness" of the document.

Planning officers at the Council have concluded that the "best course of action" is to withdraw the Core Strategy completely and to draw up a new one "as a matter of urgency", the Council said.

The cabinet agreed to withdraw the Core Strategy following a recommendation by the Council's officers in a report.

The Planning Inspector examining the Core Strategy raised concerns about the Council's proposal to release 50-55 acres of green belt land for employment, development and 5,520 new homes.

The Inspector also raised concerns about plans for a new link road to junction 19 of the M62, which was aimed at supporting employment development and to avoid traffic from using Heywood as a short-cut.

The Council originally requested a six month extension to allow them time to review their evidence base. This was requested in response to an Exploratory Meeting undertaken by the Planning Inspector and was due to concerns of the soundness of the document.

The Council has withdrawn its Core Strategy because it feared that any modification would be "so fundamental" that they may conflict with the Core Strategy, the Council said in a letter to the Planning Inspector.

The Council hopes to adopt a new Core Strategy by the middle of next year.

What a shame that local councils here in Norfolk do not have the courage to do this!  This is a major decision by a council that clearly has their residents in mind and wants to make sure they do the right thing.  SNUB’s message to GNDP and its members is:

“Use this as a precedent and have the courage to call a halt to the unlawful and now unadopted Joint Core Strategy that disregards the wishes of your local residents.”

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