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Newark & Sherwood Plan Review - Publication Amended Core Strategy

Gypsies, Travellers and Travelling Showpeople

5.15     Newark and Sherwood has a long tradition of Gypsies and Travellers living in certain locations in the District, mainly in Newark, but also in Ollerton & Boughton and rural locations across the District. The Regional Plan sets out the future pitch requirement for the District, until 2012, of 84 pitches. This is based on research in the Nottinghamshire Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Needs Assessment. Through the Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment (June 2016) (GTAA) a need for 40 pitches has been identified between 2013 - 2028. As a result of permissions having been granted since 2013, 28 additional pitches need to be provided over the rest of the plan period. Since the Assessment was published the District Council has made considerable progress in meeting this target. In total we have granted permission for 32 new pitches over this period which is around 38% of the total required. The breakdown of permissions is as follows:

Table 1

Location of new pitch provision

Pitches granted planning permission

Newark Urban Area

3

Ollerton & Boughton

29

Total

32

 

5.16     Since 2007 over 100 additional pitches have been delivered in Newark, Ollerton and in rural locations across the District, which is by far the highest in the East Midlands. Whilst this number of pitches has more than met the supply for the previous plan period, it is now the responsibility of the Council to ensure that supply up until 2028 is met. The approach is to secure such pitches through every avenue open to the Council. Core Policy 4 sets out the various ways that future need will be secured. It is proposed that given the balance of recent permissions - 100% in rural locations in the Southwell and Sherwood Areas - that the Council will secure additional provision in and around the Newark Urban area where most Gypsies and Travellers live in the District. That is not to say that other locations are not appropriate provided they meet the policy requirements set out in Core Policy 5.

5.17     The Regional Plan does not identify any separate No need for Travelling Showpeople plot pitch provision has been identified, however Tthe Council will consider any unexpected demand as set out in the provisions  of Core Policy 5.

Core Policy 4

Gypsies & Travellers and Travelling Showpeople - New Pitch Provision

The District Council will, with partners, address future Gypsy,and Travellers and Travelling Showpeople pitch requirements provision for the District which is consistent with the East Midlands Regional Plan most up to date Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment (GTAA) though all necessary means, including:

  • The allocation of new sites through the development plan;
  • The granting of planning permission for pitches on new sites in line with Core Policy 5;
  • The granting of planning permission for the provision of additional pitches at existing sites through further appropriate intensification of use or expansion of the site in line with Core Policy 5;
  • The purchase by the Council, or partners, of new sites for additional pitches;
  • Encouraging owners of underutilized sites to allow occupation of vacant pitches;
  • The compulsory purchase of existing sites with the benefit of planning permission which are not in use; and
  • The provision of flood resilience measures to enable the safe expansion of existing sites in partnership with the Environment Agency.

Future pitch provision will be provided largely in and around the Newark Urban Area and Ollerton & Boughton areas – on a scale which reflects, proportionately, the population size of these settlements: line with the Councils Spatial Strategy with the focus of the Council’s efforts to seek to secure additional provision in and around Newark Urban Area.

Newark Urban Area    78%

Ollerton & Boughton  22%

The Council will secureidentify and, where necessary, allocate 8440 pitches to meet identified need through the Allocations & Development Management DPDover the period of the current GTAA as follows:

Time Period

Pitch Requirement

2013 – 2018

14 pitches – 12 granted permission therefore a

Residual Requirement of 2

2018 – 2023

15 pitches

2023 – 2028

11 pitches

 

No separate need for Showmen’s sites has been identified. Applications for Showmen’s sites will be assessed against the criteria of Core Policy 5.

5.18     The policy for the selection consideration of Ssites for Gypsies & Travellers and Travelling Showpeople is derived from Circular 01/2006 Planning for Gypsy and Traveller Caravan Sites, Circular 04/2007 Planning for Travelling Showpeople and Designing Gypsy and Traveller Sites – A Good Practice Guide (May 2008) the national Planning Policy for Traveller Sites (August 2015). This policy will also guide decision making on individual applications for such sites.

5.19     Tolney Lane represents the focus for existing gypsy and traveller pitch provision within the Newark Urban Area. The location is however, currently subject to significant flood risk and so to justify additional pitch provision (usually of a temporary nature) proposals will need to demonstrate material considerations which outweigh flood risk.

Core Policy 5

Criteria for Considering Sites for Gypsies & Travellers and Travelling Showpeople

The following criteria will be used to guide the process of allocation, in the Allocations & Development Management DPD, of individual sites and to help inform decisions on proposals reflecting unexpected demand:. In considering all sites, the District Council will reflect the overall aims of reducing the need for long distance travelling and possible environmental damage caused by unauthorized encampments and the contribution that live/work mixed use sites make to achieving sustainable development.

  1. The site would not lead to the loss, or adverse impact on landscape character and value, important heritage assets and their settings, nature conservation or biodiversity sites;
  2. The site is reasonably situated with access to essential services of mains water, electricity supply, drainage and sanitation and to a range of basic and everyday community services and facilities – including education, health, shopping and transport facilities;
  3. The site has safe and convenient access to the highway network;
  4. The site would offer a suitable level of residential amenity to any proposed occupiers, including consideration of public health, and have no adverse impact on the amenity of nearby residents particularly in rural and semi-rural settings where development is restricted overall;
  5. The site is capable of being designed to ensure that appropriate landscaping and planting would provide and maintain visual amenity;
  6. In the case of any development proposal which raises the issue of flood risk, regard will be had to advice contained in PPS 25: Development and Flood Risk in the Governments, ‘Planning Policy for Traveller Sites’and the findings of the Newark and Sherwood Strategic Flood Risk Assessment. Where flooding is found to be an issue, the District Council will require the completion of a site specific Flood Risk Assessment, applying both the Sequential and Exceptions Tests, as appropriate, to achieve safety for eventual occupiers;
  7. Where a major development project requires the temporary or permanent relocation of a major traveller site the District Council will work with the applicant and the affected community to identify an alternative site using the spatial strategy and above criteria;
  8. When calculating site capacities the following pitch sizes will be used as a guide: 

Pitch size

Pitch type

250 sqm

Transit sites.

350 sqm

Permanent sites where there are communal facilities within the overall site.

550 sqm

Permanent sites where pitches are self-contained.

640 sqm

Permanent sites where pitches are self-contained and there is an element of business use.

  1. Proposals for new pitch development on Tolney Lane will be assessed by reference to the Sequential and Exception Tests as defined in the Planning Practice Guidance. These will normally be provided by temporary planning permission. Development to improve the standard of amenity within existing lawful pitches on Tolney Lane will be supported where it can satisfy the exception test and complies with other relevant development plan policies.

Subject to the other provisions of this policy, the District Council will be prepared to consider proposals for additional pitch provision for Gypsies and Travellers on existing caravan sites (of all kinds) – including unused or under-used sites.