North East Derbyshire Publication Draft Local Plan (Reg 19)

Search Representations

Results for Hallam Land Management Ltd search

New search New search

Object

North East Derbyshire Publication Draft Local Plan (Reg 19)

Green Belt Review

Representation ID: 8148

Received: 03/05/2018

Respondent: Hallam Land Management Ltd

Agent: DLP (Planning) Ltd - Sheffield office

Legally compliant? No

Sound? No

Duty to co-operate? No

Representation Summary:

This objection:
a. The failure of the Green Belt Topic Paper to consider reasonable alternatives in respect of meeting Sheffield's unmet housing needs
b. The failure of the GBTP to consider and sites on the edge of Sheffield
c. The failure of the GBTP to justify the decision not to allocate Safeguarded land;
d. The failure of the Green Belt Topic Paper to consider the scale of green belt release taking into account potential unmet need from Sheffield;
e. Highlights that the appropriate the scoring of the two sites subject to this objection in the Green Belt Review 2017;

Change suggested by respondent:

t.
f. Changes required to policy SS10 and paragraph 4.71
4.34 The contents of the Green Belt Background Paper does not respond to the issues that we have raised in out earlier reg 19 objection and as such we still consider that main modifications are required to make the plan sound.
4.35 In order to make the plan sound the following changes are required to policy SS10 and paragraph 4.71
4.36 Changes required to paragraph 4.71
4.71 National guidance requires that when defining Green Belt boundaries authorities should have regard to their permanence in the long term, so that they are capable of enduring beyond the plan period9 . The identification of 'safeguarded land' between the urban area and the Green Belt can help to meet longer-term development needs that extend beyond the current plan period, thereby avoiding the need for a review of the Green Belt with each Local Plan review. However given the inherent uncertainty of accurately predicting development needs beyond the plan period, it is difficult to say how much land would be required and whether the locations selected now would be appropriate in the future. This makes it difficult to demonstrate exceptional circumstances for removing the land from the Green Belt for the purposes of safeguarding and therefore in the absence of clear evidence, the Plan does not identify any safeguarded land. There exist exceptional circumstances to review the green belt boundary as set out in paragraph 4.68 of the plan and in Green Belt Topic paper (January 2018). This review however concerns itself with meeting the needs of the district in the most sustainable way while supporting the strategy of the plan. In considering how the future needs of the area might also be met in the most sustainable way account needs to be taken of unmet need arising from Sheffield City and the contribution any release of land adjacent to the city might assist the city in meeting its needs in the most sustainable way. Naturally this will require a different approach to that applied in the Green Belt Topic Paper. While the exact level of future development requirement is not known it is considered appropriate that a number of sites are identified adjacent to the three main settlements within the district as well as sites adjacent to the City so that future sustainable development maybe accommodated without the need for green belt release in the future. This approach while removing more sites from the green belt than required to meet present needs will maintain the credibility of the planning system by maintaining the longevity of the green belt boundary beyond the plan period.
4.37 Changes required to policy SS10
Policy SS10: North East Derbyshire Green Belt
Add
4. The following sites are excluded from the green belt and identified as "Safeguarded Land" the purpose of this allocation is to allow for future development needs to be met without requiring a further review of the greenbelt. These sites have been selected to meet both the locally generated needs beyond the plan period and the needs of Sheffield City once these become known. As such some of these sites might come forward for development within the plan period while others may remain underdeveloped for a considerable period of time. Safeguarded Sites as shown on the Policies Map, will be protected from inappropriate development except in very special circumstances and where the potential harm to the Green Belt is clearly outweighed by other material planning considerations or unless required to meet identified development needs which cannot be met elsewhere. Safeguarded sites might be allocated for development in the review or atrial review of the plan.

Full text:

Contents Page

0.0 Introduction 4
1.0 Background to Sheffield unmet housing needs 6
a. The position of Sheffield City Council 6
b. Sheffield City Council - unmet need existing and future 7
c. The definition of the Housing Market Area 8

2.0 The inappropriate approach of sustainability appraisal regrading Green belt locations in the context of The requirement to consider reasonable alternatives 8
3.0 The justification for not identifying Safeguarded Land 9
d. The justification for identifying Safeguarded Land 11
4.0 The shortcomings of the Green Belt Assessment as it relates to Land South of Bochum Parkway 12
e. The exceptional circumstances for the release of Land South of Bochum Parkway from the green Belt and allocated as Safeguarded land 14
f. Changes required to policy SS10 and paragraph 4.71 15
5.0 The deliverability and sustainability of the proposed safeguarded land at Bochum Parkway 17

0.0 INTRODUCTION
0.1 This representation is made by the Strategic Planning Research Unit (SPRU), DLP Planning Ltd on behalf of various clients to consultation of the North East Derbyshire Publication Draft Local Plan.
0.2 The site has not been considered previously by the council as they have failed to undertake a proper assessment of all reasonable alternatives as part of the Sustainability Assessment as required by the regulations or properly discharged the Duty to Cooperate.
0.3 The site subject to this representation forms a sustainable urban extension to the south of Sheffield where it can easily and sustainably access all of the facilities of the city and reduce although not completely negate the pressure for out migration to other locations within the District. The area controlled by Hallam Land Management is outlined below although not all of this is proposed for development, most notably those tree belts subject to adopted Local Plan Policy NE5 (Other sites of Importance for Nature Conservation)
Figure 1: Plan of ownership of Hallam Land


0.4 The site is currently designated as Green Belt land and within the Moss Valley Conservation Area in the adopted Local Plan but falls outside of the Special Landscape Areas (Policy NE2).
0.5 The site is within the single ownership of Hallam Land Management a National Company based in Sheffield with a long proven track record of identifying and bringing forward sustainable urban extensions. It is now considered appropriate to promote this land interest in order to address the housing needs of both Sheffield and North East Derbyshire in a sustainable and coordinated way. It is therefore considered that both councils should engage positively with this proposal and this representation is an invitation for both councils to start the process of cooperation in order that this site can be developed as a mixed use sustainable urban extension for up to 800 dwellings plus open space and community facilities. It is recognised that there are opportunities to extend this proposed allocation including the incorporation of land in Sheffield City Council notwithstanding these opportunities the area can in itself be a sustainable self-contained allocation in the emerging Local Plan.
0.6 This representation covers the following points:
a. The failure of the Green Belt Topic Paper to consider reasonable alternatives in respect of meeting Sheffield's unmet housing needs
b. The failure of the Green Belt Topic paper to consider and sites on the edge of Sheffield
c. The failure of the Green Belt Topic Paper to justify the decision not to allocate Safeguarded land;
d. The failure of the Green Belt Topic Paper to consider the scale of green belt release taking into account potential unmet need from Sheffield;
e. Highlights that the appropriate the scoring of the two sites subject to this objection in the Green Belt Review 2017;

1.0 BACKGROUND TO SHEFFIELD UNMET HOUSING NEEDS
a. The position of Sheffield City Council
1.1 North East Derbyshire Local Plan 2011-2033 (February 2017) Consultation Statement shows the comments made by SCC to the Plan. Sheffield City Council commented on both the "North East Derbyshire's Initial Draft Plan" and the more recent consultation in 2017.
1.2 The common themes running though the comments from SCC are:
a. the degree of interconnectivity between the northern part of the district and the City with increased commuting expected between these locations;
b. while the City Council are committed to significant green belt release they nevertheless consider it will be necessary for adjoining authorities to make provision for accommodating unmet need
c. the identification of Safeguarded Land is consistent with the aims of the NPPF to ensure enduring Green Belt boundaries
d. while some land parcels adjacent to Sheffield's urban area, which scored red in the council's green belt review actually have locational benefits that could potentially weigh in favour of release
e. the identification of green belt release adjoining the City may be an issue to be picked up through a future review of the North Derbyshire and South Yorkshire Green Belt.
1.3 The tables below highlight the specific references made to green belt in the context of wider comments made regard the need for the plan to address Sheffield's unmet need
Table 1 North East Derbyshire Local Plan 2011-2033 (February 2017) Consultation Statement Comments by SCC on Initial Draft Plan
Appendix D Representations to Initial Draft Local Plan (Part 1), February 2015
Element Comments
North East Derbyshire Green Belt The SCR Combined Approach to carrying out Green Belt reviews is being used to guide individual authorities' reviews, rather than a single region wide review. We think that a strategic review of Green Belt across the whole SCR is needed now to ensure the most sustainable options for accommodating growth across the city region can be identified.
References to Green Belt 'constraining development' (5.42 and 5.60), may not accord with the thrust of national policy, whereby Green Belt boundaries should be reviewed where necessary, taking into account all relevant local circumstances to ensure objectively-assessed housing needs are met.


Table 2 North East Derbyshire Local Plan 2011-2033 (February 2017) Consultation Statement Comments on by SCC on Consultation Draft (February 2017) Plan
Consultation Draft (February 2017)
Policy SS2: Scale of Development Our response to the consultation in March 2015 highlighted that Sheffield might not be able to accommodate all its own objectively assessed housing need. We will set out the options for meeting our growth later this year, including significant Green Belt release. However, some options may not be deliverable in the short-medium term. It is therefore necessary to approach neighbouring authorities about meeting some of Sheffield's housing needs, particularly in the short to medium term up to 2028. After that, we would expect strategic sites within Sheffield to boost supply up to 2034 and beyond.
Green Belt Review The Green Belt methodology outlined is different to, but not inconsistent with, Sheffield's approach to Green Belt review. Identification of Safeguarded Land is consistent with the aims of the NPPF to ensure enduring Green Belt boundaries. We note there is recognition within the Green Belt review that some land parcels adjacent to Sheffield's urban area, which scored red, have locational benefits that could potentially weigh in favour of release, although more detailed consideration would be needed.
This may be an issue to be picked up through a future review of the North Derbyshire and South Yorkshire Green Belt.


b. Sheffield City Council - unmet need existing and future
1.4 The Strategic Planning Research Unit (SPRU) produced a report in March 2017 on the 5 Year Housing Land Supply Position of Sheffield City Council. This has been submitted as part of the objections to this plan and it highlighted a range of housing requirements for Sheffield including up to 2,475 dpa (Joint SHMA), between 2,398 dpa (2010 SNPP) and 3,627 dpa (migration led) (The SCR report of 2013) and SPRU own projections ranging between 2,264 dpa 10 year average migration and 2,684 dpa (10 year average migration plus allowance for constrained household formation)
1.5 Based upon the most UpToDate evidence available for the city at the time and the calculation of the 5 Year Land Supply resulted, in a five year land position for Sheffield City Council's (2016-2021) of only 1.24 years supply of housing land.
1.6 Even if the DCLG household projection are used the shortfall is still less than 3 years (2.98 years).
1.7 As referred to in the SPRU objection to policy SS2 the Government consulted last year (2017) on "Planning for Homes in the Right Places" which included both a standardised calculation for housing need but also an example of the approach applied to each planning authority area.
1.8 The Draft Guidance Published for consultation in March 2018 reaffirms the approach in calculating the OAN as set out in the previous September 2017 consultation.
1.9 For Sheffield the standardised approach would require some 2,093 dpa, slightly higher than the 2,0030 dpa used to calculate the sub 3 years supply of land.
1.10 Even taking account of the most recent evidence of net completions from MHCLG the average level of completions in Sheffield is significantly below the level of housing required to meet the standardised approach as illustrated by the past rate of net completions. It should be noted that the government live tables are used here rather than the council's own figures as these are the source of figures that will be used for the delivery test proposed in the Draft Framework.
1.11 Given that Sheffield City Council are unable to demonstrate a 5 year housing land supply, and there is clearly no clarity as to whether the scale of need that can be met within the city's boundaries then a sound plan for NEDDC must make provisional sites available through the identification of Safeguarded Land in sustainable locations in order to accommodate this unmet need in the near future when the overall level of unmet need is clarified.
c. The definition of the Housing Market Area
1.12 Our other submissions including that with regard to the Duty to Cooperate Statement of Compliance highlights the very strong demographic and economic links between NEDDC and the City of Sheffield. Given the clear strong relationship between the northern Towns of the district and Sheffield City it is difficult to understand why the areas housing needs have been assessed as part of a housing sub area which includes Bassetlaw with which NEDDC has a far weaker relationship with than Sheffield City.

2.0 THE INAPPROPRIATE APPROACH OF SUSTAINABILITY APPRAISAL REGRADING GREEN BELT LOCATIONS IN THE CONTEXT OF THE REQUIREMENT TO CONSIDER REASONABLE ALTERNATIVES
2.1 The Sustainability Appraisal (February 2018) states that the Housing Land Availability Assessment (published 2017) identified 500 sites, 180 of which were assessed against the SA Framework in a cluster analysis process. The remaining sites were screened on the basis of:
"1. Availability;
2. Five Dwellings and above;
3. Without substantial flood risk;
4. Not within a European designated conservation site;
5. Without substantial hazardous risk;
6. In a sustainable location: near an existing settlement boundary and within the 15 most sustainable settlements for housing development in the District (as identified in the Settlement Hierarchy Study, 2016); and
7. Not within the Green Belt, unless the site has been identified within the Green Belt Review as not, or only partially, meeting Green Belt purposes."
2.2 In St Albans v. SSCLG [2010] J.P.L. 70: the ER for the East of England Plan assessed alternatives for proposed Greenfield urban extensions to Hemel Hempstead, Welwyn Garden City and Hatfield, but not alternatives to them. Mitting J held that this was unlawful (paragraph 21):
"It is no answer to point to the requirement in the policies for green belt reviews to be undertaken at the local development framework stage. All that will do is to determine where within the district of the three towns erosion will occur, not whether it should occur there at all."
2.3 In this case, Green Belt release had to be considered against its alternative of no Green Belt release. The opposite must also hold true.
2.4 In this case the consideration of reasonable alternatives would be to consider the allocation of safeguarded sites rather than dismissing the concept of safeguarded sites on the ground that the level of need was uncertain.
2.5 It would also be appropriate to consider a variety of sites that could be released to meet different levels of unmet need in Sheffield.
3.0 THE JUSTIFICATION FOR NOT IDENTIFYING SAFEGUARDED LAND
3.1 Paragraph 4.71 of the Plan claims that the inherent uncertainty of accurately predicting development needs beyond the plan period makes it difficult to demonstrate exceptional circumstances for removing the land from the Green Belt for the purposes of safeguarding. It concludes that in the absence of clear evidence, the Plan does not identify any safeguarded land.
3.2 This excuse of it being "too difficult" to identify the exact level of future needs is simply repeated in the late published "Green Belt Background Report" it provides no policy background to support this approach.
3.3 It is notable that the council's own consultants NLP do not support this approach. The NLP "North East Derbyshire: Green Belt Review - Part 1" addressed the issue of Safeguarded Land in Section 5. This undertook a review of other local plans and concluded in paragraph 5.5 that in the earlier review of various Inspector's Examination Reports (Section 2.0) found that:
"the Inspector for the Newcastle and Gateshead Core Strategy and Urban Core Plan had accepted the Council's decision not to identify safeguarded land to meet longer term development needs partly on the basis that there was no clear evidence of need beyond the Plan period (i.e. the need could not reasonably be predicted) and partly due to several large allocations producing a substantial number of houses after 2030."
3.4 In the only two examples found by the council's own consultant that accepted the "no clear evidence of need" as a reason for not identifying Safeguarded Land actually had large allocations which would meet some need beyond the plan period. This is not the case in NEDDC.
3.5 The situation in NEDDC is not only that there are no long term allocations which will meet the needs of the northern towns beyond the plan period but that Sheffield City Council (SCC) have repeatedly highlighted the need for green belt release on the edge of the city is likely to be required to meet the cities needs within the plan period. While the full extent of this need has not been identified it does not prevent the Plan from identifying suitable locations and safeguarding them until such time as they are required to be released either fully or in part to meet the city's needs.
3.6 In paragraphs 5.6 and 5,7 which referred NEDDC to both the recent experience in Rotherham and the PAS guidance and concluded that the council had a choice of either making no allowance or making an allowance for between 5 to 10 years of employment and housing need beyond the plan period (paragraph 5.8).
3.7 In terms of the level of land to include as safeguarded the remainder of the section (paragraphs 5.9 to 5.25) set out a range of options including the impact of addressing the issue of meeting the needs of Sheffield in paragraph 5.22 which identifies as an example, a number of parcels located to the south of the Sheffield urban area, which scored 'Red' in the Functionality Study (i.e. DRO/GB/05, DRO/GB/06, DRO/GB/11, DRO/GB/12, DRO/GB/21, DRO/GB/22, SHEFF/GB/001, SHEFF/GB/002 and SHEFF/GB/003) benefit from very good access to the strategic road network (A61 and A6102) and are also in reasonably close proximity to employment opportunities, as well as leisure and recreation facilities, located on Bochum Parkway (A6102). The report considers that this could potentially weigh in favour in releasing these parcels for development although detailed consideration would need to be given to the deliverability of these parcels as well as to any other parcels which appear to be more sustainably located.
3.8 Core Output on the issue of Safeguarded land from NLP's "North East Derbyshire: Green Belt Review - Part 1" was that it was recommended that the Council seek to safeguard sufficient land to meet development needs for between 5 and 10 years beyond the Plan period.
3.9 The Core Output acknowledged that this required the council to determine their own OAN which they have now done they concluded that the developable yield of 'Green' and 'Amber' parcels is sufficient to meet the development needs of Growth Scenarios A and B during the Plan period and for up to 10 years beyond for Growth Scenario A and for up to 5 years beyond for Growth Scenario B. If the Council choose Growth Scenario C, then it was recognised that further work will be required to identify sufficient land for development. This the consultants acknowledged would require joint working with the neighbouring local planning authorities.
3.10 In disregard of the advice for the consultants the Green Belt Background Paper simply repeats the "too difficult mantra" from the already published plan (paragraph 3.45). There are Clearly exceptional circumstances which justify Green Belt review. If the Green Belt is to be reviewed then it should be reviewed in full accordance with the Framework which clearly suggest that such reviews should take into account needs beyond the plan period.
3.11 The evidence presented to the council both at the regulation 19 consultation and earlier consultations clearly present evidence of not only unmet need in the plan period but also beyond the plan period. There is still further evidence of unmet need from Sheffield City. Ignoring such evidence on the grounds that it is "imprecise" is simply an excuse for not undertaking a full and proper assessment of the Green Belt. As such the Background paper is simply a partial review.
3.12 In light of SPRU's recalculation of the OAN a five year land requirement would need sufficient land to accommodate 1,890 dwellings (5 year) up to 3,780 (10 year). In addition to this however is the need to make provision for meeting Sheffield unmet needs as has been highlighted by the council thought the DtC process.
d. The justification for identifying Safeguarded Land
3.13 This approach is unsound as it does not conform to national guidance notably paragraphs 83, 84 and 85 in so far as the boundaries presently being proposed are even according to the plan itself unlikely to endure beyond the plan period.
3.14 This justification for not making such allocations could be applied universally, as needs beyond the plan period are never known with any degree of precision.
3.15 The fact that there is a requirement to alter the Green Belt within the plan period due to exceptional circumstances is the first part of the test to meeting the exceptional circumstances required to identify safeguarded land.
3.16 While it is recognised that not only do exceptional circumstances need to be demonstrated in general for Green Belt release but also each site needs to demonstrate exceptional circumstances.
3.17 In the case of this plan the general justification for reviewing the green belt is the need to meet the development requirements of the area in a sustainable way over the next twenty years. Having established and accepted this as a justification the plan then goes onto allocate sites for development within the plan period. In undertaking this action, the guidance in paragraph 83 of NPPF requires councils to consider the permeance of the new boundaries beyond the plan period.
3.18 The council in drawing the new boundaries are also required to consider the consequences for sustainable development, in this case such as meeting the needs of Sheffield City in the most sustainable locations. As such locations next to the city are clearly a potential sustainable option (NPPF paragraph 84).
3.19 Paragraph 85 applies when local authorities define green belt boundaries it requires where necessary to identify safeguarded land in order to meet longer term needs beyond the plan period. In this case there are two clear indicators that as presently drawn the green belt boundaries will be required to be amended either within or at the end of the plan period these are:
a. While the degree of Sheffield City's needs remains unresolved it is clear that there will be a need (albeit of an unspecified amount) for needs to be meet within the plan period outside of the city in the most appropriate locations. As identified by SCC some of the most locationally preferable sites are those adjacent to the city boundaries.
b. The fact that there are no other longer-term sites outside of the green belt in the Northern Towns mean that beyond the plan period there will be additional needs that will require future green belt amendments.
3.20 The need to meet future needs in sustainable locations provides clear exceptional circumstances for the identification of safeguarded land. Exactly which areas of land maybe identified as safeguarded is down to the site specific exceptional circumstances.
4.0 THE SHORTCOMINGS OF THE GREEN BELT ASSESSMENT AS IT RELATES TO LAND SOUTH OF BOCHUM PARKWAY
4.2 The site being promoted for release form the Green Belt has not been assessed in the Green Belt Background paper 2018 as it was excluded prior to the assessment. The site has previously been identified and assessed as parcels SHEFF/GB/004 & 5 Land on Bochum Parkway and Land on Bochum Parkway / Lightfoot Lane as identified by the NLP "North East Derbyshire: Green Belt Review (NEDGBR)- Appendix 3".
4.3 These two areas of land scored "red" on purpose 1 and 3 of the green belt and "amber on the other purposes.
4.4 A "red" score is any site that robustly meets at least one of the Green Belt purposes (paragraph 4.15 NEDGBR part 1).
4.5 It is noted that sites which score "red" in the overall assessment are still capable of allocation (for example allocation KL 1 ref KIL/GB/025 scores red for purpose 3 like both parts of the Bochum Parkway site).
i. Assessment under purpose 1: preventing the sprawl of the urban area
4.6 For both locations it is claimed that they are detached from the urban area, but this assessment fails to acknowledge that the boundary of the urban area actually runs along the whole of the northern side of both sites. Not only are the northern boundary of the sites the presently defined edge of the urban area but it is the parkway a major public transport route providing a particularly urbanised edge to the city.
4.7 The assessment also fails as it considers the two parcels separately. To the east of the site is the existing built form and beyond that is the large previously developed site of Norton Aerodrome. It is clear that if the City council are to utilise all of the PDL in their own area then the Aerodrome will be released from the green belt for development thereby extending residential development along the southern side of the Parkway.
4.8 When considered together the two sites make a logical extension to the city and can not be described as "remote".
4.9 It is noted that the assessment takes on board no such subtleties but simply applies a mathematical formula to the level of containment.
4.10 A more nuanced assessment of this site under this purpose would result in an "amber" rather than a "red" score under this purpose.
4.11 In terms of future boundaries in its noted that the assessment concludes that these would be either "Strong" or "Moderately strong" (SHEFF/GB/005 and 004 respectively). Despite this assessment it is suggested that these strong and moderately strong boundaries would weaken the green belt boundary. They clearly would not they would in fact provide a more appropriate permanent green belt boundary that the one presently represented by the large scale dual carriageway that defines the boundary at present.
4.12 The fact that the sites would be "isolated with no link to the urban area" completely fails to take into account that the site would not be developed in isolation but would be part of a development along the southern side of Bochum parkway which would utilise the enhanced public transport system to gain access to all parts o f the city and as such would actually result in the development being better connected to all higher order services and facilities than any other allocation in the current plan.
4.13 The assessment also fails to acknowledge that the development of these two sites would be linked with the development of sites within the cities boundary which would produce a sustainable level of development being able to fund not only public transport infrastructure improvements but also on site social infrastructure provision.
4.14 This part of the assessment is relative so a site that presently has a poor boundary and increases this to a moderately prior boundary then it would score more positively that the above sites which will still have strong or moderately strong boundaries. Of course, this assessment does not take into account any mitigation which of course can improve these baseline assessments.
4.15 An illustration of how this scoring system works is KL1 (KIL/GB/025) which only has intermittent hedges along its long southern boundary but scores "amber" under this assessment NEDGBR appendix 6
4.16 The score under Purpose 1 should be "amber" rather than "red" for both sites.
ii. Assessment under Purpose 2 is "to prevent neighbouring towns from merging into one another".
4.17 This assessment is simply a measurement of distance rather than an assessment of the actual impact of the development of the site on the perception of coalescence.
4.18 The amber score for these sites is determined by the size of the gap between the site and Dronfield being between 1km and 2km. This is an incorrect measure of this purpose.
4.19 It is unclear which part of the sites this distance is measured from and to.
4.20 There are other parts of Sheffield that are much closer to Dronfield and Coal Aston) than either of these two sites.
4.21 There is no inter-visibility between the sites and Dronfield to the south west.
4.22 There would be no perception of coalesce as to access Dronfield or Coal Aston would require a 3.3 km drive which would take the traveller though the urban area. Alternatively, the longer route would take the traveller from the western edge of the site around the urban area edge of Norton and Batemoor for a couple of kilometres before Reaching the open area between the Chesterfield Road roundabout and then onto the northern edge of Dronfield.
4.23 The actual distance, the lack of inter visibility as well as how anyone would actually experience the distance between these sites and Dronfield would by any more comprehensive assessment of this Purpose 2 would score their performance as "Green"
iii. Assessment under Purpose 3 is "safeguarding the countryside form encroachment".
4.24 Part 3c of this assessment considers the present boundaries of the site without mitigation. Despite the assessment in Purpose 1 that SHEFF/GB/004 and 005 that the unmitigated boundaries are either "relatively strong" or "strong" the assessment under this purpose is that the same boundaries would weaken the green belt boundaries. This is not the test the test set in Purpose 3c is about the strength of the green belt boundaries it does not request the comparative analysis that has been applied to derive the "red" score.
4.25 Virtually any development will have an impact on the encroachment of the countryside but the existing strong boundaries and the potential to enhance these further would reduce the impact of encroachment in the case of these two sites and as such they should score "amber" rather than "red".
iv. Assessment under Purpose 4 is "safeguarding the countryside form encroachment".
4.26 Both sites score "green" in respect of this purpose and SHEFF/GB/005 is described as "well screened and enclosed by mature tree coverage". This appears at odds with some of the assessments for the above Purposes.
v. Assessment under Purpose 5 is "Assist in Urban Regeneration".
4.27 Both sites score "amber" in respect of this purpose together with all other green belt sites. This assessment however fails to recognise that the comprehensive planning of these areas together with the previously developed site at Norton Aerodrome would assist in delivering the PDL site in so far as it will be able to assist funding the required transport and social infrastructure required to development the combined area as a new neighbourhood.
4.28 In light of the potential to assist in delivering this PDL sites (albeit outside of the district both sites should score green under this assessment.
e. The exceptional circumstances for the release of Land South of Bochum Parkway from the green Belt and allocated as Safeguarded land
4.29 Although the site is located in the Green Belt, it remains that Sheffield is a the most sustainable settlement against which additional provision can be made it is the logical focus of growth to meet the housing need in the district given the identified and strong relationship between the emerging housing needs for the district and the city. Green Belt release will be required to bring this site forward, but it is considered that the exceptional circumstances exist to justify such a release.
4.30 The site forms a logical extension to Sheffield and is one of the few opportunities for the city to expand. The northern boundary to the southern part of the site continues corresponds with the edge of the Special Landscape Area in the extant Local Plan and is identifiable by hedgerows and tree belts on the ground. Built form would be kept north of these features reinforcing them with additional planting if necessary. The site does sit between other forms of development which lie to the south of Bochum Parkway to the East and west of the site.
4.31 The site is considered a particularly suitable candidate for Green Belt release as it performs a strategic function addressing the important relationship between the district and the city. It represents one of the few significant opportunities that the city has to accommodate its housing needs immediately adjacent to its own urban area which has the advantage of being able to extend services and facilities into the area rather than relying upon extended public transport routes. The levels of growth required to meet the objectively assessed housing need will require a Green Belt review. The release of this particular site can be justified as it contributes little to the wider function of the Green Belt in this location. To demonstrate this, the impact of the release of the site is assessed against the functions of the Green Belt as follows:
a. to check the unrestricted sprawl of large built-up areas: the remaining Green Belt will still perform this function as the scale of this release and its well defined visual boundaries is a clearly defined urban extension and not unrestricted sprawl.
b. to prevent neighbouring towns merging into one another: Dronfield and Ridgeway lie to the south of the site, however there will be no visual coalescence or perceived coalescence between the city and as a result of the release of this site.
c. to assist in safeguarding the countryside from encroachment: it is accepted that there will be development in the countryside but again the well-defined nature of the site means that the site will not be seen as an encroachment into the wider countryside.
d. to preserve the setting and special character of historic towns: the development of this site will not impact the setting of a historic town.
e. to assist in urban regeneration, by encouraging the recycling of derelict and other urban land: the release of this site is required to meet housing need based on an assessment that already considers the deliverability of other urban land.
4.32 In light of the above it is considered that there are exceptional circumstances for Green Belt release and that this site maybe released without detriment to the Green Belt function in this locality. These are:
a. The very good sustainability characteristics of the site
b. The fact it is one of very few sites which allow the city of Sheffield to expand
c. The limited impact on the functions of the green belt in this location
d. The requirement to meet the objectively assessed housing need of the wider housing market area in the most appropriate and sustainable locations.
4.33 It is considered that the combination of the above factors represent the site specific exceptional circumstances required to justify the release of this site form the green belt.
f. Changes required to policy SS10 and paragraph 4.71
4.34 The contents of the Green Belt Background Paper does not respond to the issues that we have raised in out earlier reg 19 objection and as such we still consider that main modifications are required to make the plan sound.
4.35 In order to make the plan sound the following changes are required to policy SS10 and paragraph 4.71
4.36 Changes required to paragraph 4.71
4.71 National guidance requires that when defining Green Belt boundaries authorities should have regard to their permanence in the long term, so that they are capable of enduring beyond the plan period9 . The identification of 'safeguarded land' between the urban area and the Green Belt can help to meet longer-term development needs that extend beyond the current plan period, thereby avoiding the need for a review of the Green Belt with each Local Plan review. However given the inherent uncertainty of accurately predicting development needs beyond the plan period, it is difficult to say how much land would be required and whether the locations selected now would be appropriate in the future. This makes it difficult to demonstrate exceptional circumstances for removing the land from the Green Belt for the purposes of safeguarding and therefore in the absence of clear evidence, the Plan does not identify any safeguarded land. There exist exceptional circumstances to review the green belt boundary as set out in paragraph 4.68 of the plan and in Green Belt Topic paper (January 2018). This review however concerns itself with meeting the needs of the district in the most sustainable way while supporting the strategy of the plan. In considering how the future needs of the area might also be met in the most sustainable way account needs to be taken of unmet need arising from Sheffield City and the contribution any release of land adjacent to the city might assist the city in meeting its needs in the most sustainable way. Naturally this will require a different approach to that applied in the Green Belt Topic Paper. While the exact level of future development requirement is not known it is considered appropriate that a number of sites are identified adjacent to the three main settlements within the district as well as sites adjacent to the City so that future sustainable development maybe accommodated without the need for green belt release in the future. This approach while removing more sites from the green belt than required to meet present needs will maintain the credibility of the planning system by maintaining the longevity of the green belt boundary beyond the plan period.
4.37 Changes required to policy SS10
Policy SS10: North East Derbyshire Green Belt
Add
4. The following sites are excluded from the green belt and identified as "Safeguarded Land" the purpose of this allocation is to allow for future development needs to be met without requiring a further review of the greenbelt. These sites have been selected to meet both the locally generated needs beyond the plan period and the needs of Sheffield City once these become known. As such some of these sites might come forward for development within the plan period while others may remain underdeveloped for a considerable period of time. Safeguarded Sites as shown on the Policies Map, will be protected from inappropriate development except in very special circumstances and where the potential harm to the Green Belt is clearly outweighed by other material planning considerations or unless required to meet identified development needs which cannot be met elsewhere. Safeguarded sites might be allocated for development in the review or atrial review of the plan.

5.0 THE DELIVERABILITY AND SUSTAINABILITY OF THE PROPOSED SAFEGUARDED LAND AT BOCHUM PARKWAY
Site Context
5.1 The site is located directly South of Bochum Parkway on the urban edge of Sheffield City although it falls within North East Derbyshire's administrative area. The Sheffield is heavily constrained by the Green Belt.
5.2 Sheffield is the centre of the Sheffield City Region and exerts economic and cultural influence over its hinterland which includes North East Derbyshire. Despite the fact that the district boundary s contiguous with the urban edge of the city and the obvious relationship between the City and the settlements in the District locations on the edge of the city have not been considered as part of the preparation of the development plan.
5.3 Dronfield is identified at the top of the hierarchy, scoring 'Very High' on all criteria which include Population Level, Retail and Community Services Level, Employment Level and Sustainable Transport Level. Clearly both Sheffield and Chesterfield represent a higher order of settlement and should be considered as potential locations for development.
5.4 As the highest order settlement available for accommodating future urban expansion within the plan area it is also a sustainable option and is therefore an appropriate place for the location of growth to meet the housing requirement of the district.
5.5 The Site lies in Flood Zone 1 and is at a low risk of flooding.
5.6 There are a good range of retail and community services, employment opportunities and excellent public transport links to the rest of the City to the north making the site a logical focus for sustainable growth.
Site Specifics
5.7 The representation site comprises of 31.2 ha of land South of Bochum Parkway, located on the southern edge of Sheffield.
5.8 The site currently comprises of arable land and some areas of woodland which assist in defining the boundaries in some locations. The northern boundary of the site is formed by Bochum Parkway while the southern boundary of the site is defined by woodland and field boundary features that coincidently form the northern edge of Special Landscape Areas (Policy NE2) as defined in the extant Local Plan
5.9 Immediately to the east is the built form of Lightwood Hospital beyond which is the previously developed site of Norton Airdrome beyond which lies a residential estate.
5.10 While the local authority boundary means that Norton Airdrome lies within Sheffield it is relevant to note that while this site also lies within the same green belt it has been promoted for development and will be considered as one of a number of sites that have been submitted to Sheffield City Council as part of their own assessment of green belt sites.
5.11 To the west of the site are open field and then Jordanthorpe Farm and school also south of the parkway.
Capacity
5.12 The site is considered to have the capacity for approximately 800 dwellings, at a developable area of 23 ha (assuming 75% of the site is developed for residential purposes) at a development density of 35 dwellings per hectare. An indicative masterplan has not been prepared as we are wishing to develop this in the context of further consultation with both the City and District Council. These assumptions are considered to be generous and provide an overall indication as to the likely level of development might be accommodated at the site.
Extant Policy
5.13 The site is currently identified as within the Green Belt and within the Moss Valley Conservation Area on in the adopted Local Plan (2001) Proposals Map.
5.14 The site has not been assessed under in the Site Assessment Stage 1 Background Paper, which forms part of the evidence base of the Initial Draft plan, but against these criteria it would score positively except in terms of criteria 2 as the site is within the Green Belt. This would according to the approach adopted by the council exclude it form further consideration however this report has already set out why such a conclusion is incorrect.
5.15 With the exception of the green belt designation, the site would score highly in terms of its suitability, achievability and availability for development, discussed in more detail later in this section.
Access
5.16 There are a number of potential access points into the site both from Bochum Parkway itself and from the Lightwood Lane which joins Bochum Parkway at a roundabout to the eastern end of the site.
Ownership
5.17 SPRU are acting on behalf of the owners of the site, Hallam Land Management Ltd, who have extensive experience in bringing forward strategic sites for mixed use and residential development.
Topography
5.18 The topography of the site slopes gradually towards the south away from Bochum Parkway.
Trees and Ecology
5.19 The site has substantial groups of trees that form part of its southern boundary which also extend northwards into the site. These are subject to policy SDC2 and will be retained and enhanced as part of the master planning of the development.
5.20 There are not known to be any ecological constraints that would prevent the site coming forward for development.
Flood Risk/ Drainage
5.21 The representation site is located in Flood Zone 1, and is therefore suitable for development in flood risk terms.
Proximity to Services and Facilities
5.22 The Framework identifies that the proximity of residential development to local services and facilities plays an important role in the achievement of sustainable development, with one of the core planning principles in Paragraph 17 being to:
"Actively manage patterns of growth to make the fullest possible use of public transport, walking and cycling, and focus significant development in locations which are or can be made sustainable".
5.23 Paragraph 37 seeks to minimise journey lengths for employment, shopping, leisure, education and other activities. Paragraph 38 requires that large developments be located within walking distance of key facilities such as primary schools and local shops (Paragraph 38). The Framework also emphasises the importance of access to high quality open space and opportunities for sport and recreation at paragraph 73.
5.24 Given the size of the site there is the potential for some facilities to be provided on site or indeed as part of a wider development including Lightwood Airport. Future residents at the site will have access to a range of community and retail services and facilities through means of transport other than the private car. The site is well located in terms of accessing many of Sheffield city's services and facilities by walking, cycling and public transport.
Access to Public Transport
5.25 Bochum Parkway is a main public transport route along the southern side of the city as such, future residents will be able to utilise sustainable alternative means of transport to the private car.
Heritage and Conservation
5.26 The Historic Environment Study identifies the site as parkland presumably due to the sites previous connection to Oakes Park to the north. This connection has been severed by Bochum Parkway. The current use of the site is now for agriculture although some remnants of the past use remain, and these could be incorporated into any future development proposal.
5.27 The site falls within the extensive Moss Valley Conservation Area, a very large designation which covers a significant amount of open Green Belt land in the north east of the district. The Conservation Area was designated in 1990 and extends north from Dronfield up to the administrative boundary with Sheffield City Council and east towards Eckington.
5.28 There is no Conservation Area Appraisal available for Moss Valley, however an Archaeological Assessment Report for Eckington was prepared in 1999 by Gill Stroud which briefly discusses the historical assets of the conservation area. The wider valley was home to the Plumbley Collieries, whilst the area between Furnace Field and Bowercinder Wood has been identified as a possible site of the 17th century Plumbley Furnace. The 18th century Upper Carlton Wheel and Lower Carlton Wheel are also located in the valley. None of these locations are in close proximity to the site and there would be no inter visibility between the development of this site and the setting of these historical assets.
5.29 In respect of the contribution of the site to the character of the conservation area, the legislative and policy framework provides the means to assessing whether and how new development of the submission site is appropriate. Part II of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 addresses conservation areas and requires local authorities to pay special attention to the "desirability of preserving or enhancing the character or appearance" of a conservation area (section 73). The Framework also offers guidance on the balance that should be sought in respect of new development and heritage assets: paragraph 126 sets out a strategy that seeks to conserve heritage assets in a manner appropriate to their significance. As such, local planning authorities should take into account the 'desirability of new development making a positive contribution to local character and distinctiveness'.
5.30 The Moss Valley Conservation Area is a rural conservation area and includes the settlement of Ridgeway as well as part of Marsh Lane. As there is no Conservation Area Statement available it is not possible to determine why the boundaries have been chosen, although it would appear that these have been drawn not just to include the countryside of historical interest but also the wider countryside up to the edges of the urban areas of Sheffield and Dronfield.
5.31 As such, the location of the representation site in the conservation area need not prevent new development; indeed, a sensitively designed development with appropriate soft boundary screening could be incorporated into the conservation area.
5.32 The Council might consider it appropriate to take this opportunity to produce a full conservation area statement for the Moss Valley Conversation Area and to review its boundaries in light of changes to the legislation and guidance since its designation.
5.33 Therefore, although measures such as a sensitive design and soft boundary treatments will address any impact upon the character of the wider conservation area, the particular character of the conservation area that is specifically in need of preservation and enhancement is considered to be some distance to the south of the site, in the Moss Valley. As such, new development at the submission site South of Bochum Parkway adjacent to the urban edge of the city is unlikely in any case to harm the wider character of the conservation area.
5.34 There are two groups of listed farm buildings to the east of the site these being:
a. Mansion House Farmhouse Lightwood Lane
b. Hazelbarrow Farmhouse Hazelbarrow
5.35 There is sufficient separation between these groups of listed buildings and the proposed site to allow any impact to be suitably mitigated.
Green Belt
5.36 Although the site is located in the Green Belt, it remains that Sheffield is a the most sustainable settlement against which additional provision can be made it is the logical focus of growth to meet the housing need in the district given the identified and strong relationship between the emerging housing needs for the district and the city. Green Belt release will be required to bring this site forward, but it is considered that the exceptional circumstances exist to justify such a release.
5.37 The site forms a logical extension to Sheffield and is one of the few opportunities for the city to expand. The northern boundary to the southern part of the site continues corresponds with the edge of the Special Landscape Area in the extant Local Plan and is identifiable by hedgerows and tree belts on the ground. Built form would be kept north of these features reinforcing them with additional planting if necessary. The site does sit between other forms of development which lie to the south of Bochum Parkway to the East and west of the site.
5.38 The site is considered a particularly suitable candidate for Green Belt release as it performs a strategic function addressing the important relationship between the district and the city. It represents one of the few significant opportunities that the city has to accommodate its housing needs immediately adjacent to its own urban area which has the advantage of being able to extend services and facilities into the area rather than relying upon extended public transport routes. The levels of growth required to meet the objectively assessed housing need will require a Green Belt review. The release of this particular site can be justified as it contributes little to the wider function of the Green Belt in this location. To demonstrate this, the impact of the release of the site is assessed against the functions of the Green Belt as follows:
a. to check the unrestricted sprawl of large built-up areas: the remaining Green Belt will still perform this function as the scale of this release and its well defined visual boundaries is a clearly defined urban extension and not unrestricted sprawl.
b. to prevent neighbouring towns merging into one another: Dronfield and Ridgeway lie to the south of the site, however there will be no visual coalescence or perceived coalescence between the city and as a result of the release of this site.
c. to assist in safeguarding the countryside from encroachment: it is accepted that there will be development in the countryside but again the well-defined nature of the site means that the site will not be seen as an encroachment into the wider countryside.
d. to preserve the setting and special character of historic towns: the development of this site will not impact the setting of a historic town.
e. to assist in urban regeneration, by encouraging the recycling of derelict and other urban land: the release of this site is required to meet housing need based on an assessment that already considers the deliverability of other urban land.
5.39 In light of the above it is considered that there are exceptional circumstances for Green Belt release and that this site maybe released without detriment to the Green Belt function in this locality. These are:
a. The very good sustainability characteristics of the site
b. The fact it is one of very few sites which allow the city of Sheffield to expand
c. The limited impact on the functions of the green belt in this location
d. The requirement to meet the objectively assessed housing need of the wider housing market area in the most appropriate and sustainable locations.
5.40 It is considered that the combination of the above factors represent the exceptional circumstances required to justify the release of this site form the green belt.
Availability, Suitability and Achievability
Available
5.41 The site is in the ownership of an experienced developer who is committed to seeing residential development come forward at the site. Although the Council have identified that potential sites within the Green Belt are not being considered at this stage, there is an opportunity to provide additional housing in the District to address the housing shortfall that has generated from the history of backlog and the increasing need to meet those shortfalls within the city region. The site is therefore considered available.
Suitable
5.42 The draft Local Plan does not consider the role of the expansion of Sheffield's urban area as it simply dismisses sites that require green belt release. Notwithstanding this the site is clearly a suitable location for additional housing given its good relationship with Sheffield's existing urban area and the ability to access all the facilities and services within the city.
5.43 It has been noted in the SPRU report that a significant proportion of the working population commute out of this part of the District to work in Sheffield. Paragraph 5.27 of the Local Plan refers to this relationship and the approach that NEDDC has taken in accommodating housing to meet demand from Sheffield in the past. It goes on to say that any comprehensive approach to address housing provision related to the Sheffield economy is widely recognised as needing a strategic approach across the City Region, however Sheffield and Rotherham are already in the process of undertaking Green Belt reviews. To avoid reviewing the boundary in NEDDC is contrary to the approach that the Framework advises.
5.44 The site is not known to be constrained by any topographical, ecological, flooding/drainage constraints or incompatible neighbouring land uses. Development at the site is unlikely to harm, the character of the Moss Valley Conservation Area.
5.45 Although the site is currently designated as Green Belt land, the principle of Green Belt release in the district has previously been recognised by the Council specifically to meet the wider housing needs. The site represents an excellent candidate for release, which would not undermine the function of the remaining land within the Green Belt in this location. There are defensible boundaries to the south of the site and new built form would remain well related to the city to the north.
5.46 The site is located adjacent to the settlement development limit of a sustainable settlement and is accessible by public transport links to a further range of employment, retail and leisure opportunities.
5.47 Given the above the site is considered to be an excellent candidate for release from the Green Belt and the site is considered a suitable for residential development.
5.48 Achievable
5.49 The site is a Greenfield site with no known development constraints requiring extensive mitigation, and is therefore considered achievable in terms of viability.
5.50 The site is not constrained by ownership issues and the landowner is keen to pursue development at the site. Therefore, subject to release from the Green Belt, the site is considered deliverable within a 15 year period.

Attachments:

Object

North East Derbyshire Publication Draft Local Plan (Reg 19)

Relationship with other Local Plans and the Duty to Co-operate

Representation ID: 8153

Received: 03/05/2018

Respondent: Hallam Land Management Ltd

Agent: DLP (Planning) Ltd - Sheffield office

Legally compliant? No

Sound? No

Duty to co-operate? No

Representation Summary:

The requirements of NPPF Paragraph 181 have not been met:
a. Evidence of effective cooperation to address the cross-boundary issues of Sheffield's unmet need is lacking. Reasonable Alternatives have been excluded without reference to evidence and without the impacts and benefits being considered in a SA.
b. There is no evidence of bipartite meetings between SCC and NEDDC to address unmet needs.
c. Cooperation has not been continuous and it has not resulted in a plan which provides the land for projected levels of development. The issue of unmet need identified at the start of plan preparation has been ignored.

Change suggested by respondent:

It is clear the duty to Cooperate has been completely ineffective in addressing the most important strategic issue which is Sheffield Housing Needs. As a result of the evidence presented here and in other objections by Hallam Land Management the Plan should make provision to accommodate a level of unmet housing need from Sheffield. The most appropriate way to achieve this would be to include a range of safeguarded land which could be released in response to the Confirmation of Sheffield City Councils Needs. Such an Approach would make the Plan compliant with the Framework while at present it is not. Detailed wording of the changes is set out in out response to the Green Belt Topic Paper.

Full text:

0.0 INTRODUCTION
0.1 This representation is made by the Strategic Planning Research Unit (SPRU), DLP Planning Ltd on behalf of various clients to consultation of the North East Derbyshire Publication Draft Local Plan.
0.2 The site has not been considered previously by the council as they have failed to undertake a proper assessment of all reasonable alternatives as part of the Sustainability Assessment as required by the regulations or discharge the Duty to Cooperate. It is clearly a site that would address some of Sheffield's unmet needs in a highly sustainable location. The complete lack of progress in respect of how the unmet needs of Sheffield are going to be address highlights the ineffectiveness of the Duty to Cooperate to Date.
0.3 The site subject to this representation forms a sustainable urban extension to the south of Sheffield where it can easily and sustainably access all of the facilities of the city and reduce although not completely negate the pressure for out migration to other locations within the District. The area controlled by Hallam Land Management is outlined below although not all of this is proposed for development, most notably those tree belts subject to adopted Local Plan Policy NE5 (Other sites of Importance for Nature Conservation)
Figure 1: Plan of ownership of Hallam Land


0.4 The site is currently designated as Green Belt land and within the Moss Valley Conservation Area in the adopted Local Plan but falls outside of the Special Landscape Areas (Policy NE2).
0.5 The site is within the single ownership of Hallam Land Management a National Company based in Sheffield with a long proven track record of identifying and bringing forward sustainable urban extensions. It is now considered appropriate to promote this land interest in order to address the housing needs of both Sheffield and North East Derbyshire in a sustainable and coordinated way. It is therefore considered that both councils should engage positively with this proposal and this representation is an invitation for both councils to start the process of cooperation in order that this site can be developed as a mixed use sustainable urban extension for up to 800 dwellings plus open space and community facilities. It is recognised that there are opportunities to extend this proposed allocation including the incorporation of land in Sheffield City Council notwithstanding these opportunities the area can in itself be a sustainable self-contained allocation in the emerging Local Plan.
0.6 The objection reviews the latest evidence regarding the economic and demographic relationship between North East Derbyshire and Sheffield City Council and conclude that they do not fall within different Housing Market Area as suggested by the council's evidence base. This reinforces the need for the plan to adequately address the issue of unmet need in a positive and effective way.
0.7 The objection highlights that the Duty to Cooperate Draft Statement of Compliance does not provide evidence that the Duty has been fulfilled instead in highlights that cooperation has been both sporadic and completely ineffective, decisions have been delayed or simply not made, and where tentative decisions have been made they have been made without the proportionate evidence base.
0.8 This approach of ineffective engagement with the issue of unmet housing need from Sheffield has meant the SA has failed to consider reasonable alternatives even though the council is stating that such alternatives have unacceptable impacts.
0.9 This representation covers the following points:
a. The ineffective and undocumented nature of duty to cooperate resulting in the failure to meet the requirements of the Framework.
b. The implication for the Sustainability Assessment in the rejection of suitabkle alternatives prior to their assessment in the SA. This failure to properly assess reasonable alternatives renders the plan unsound.

1.0 THE OVERALL APPROACH TO THE STRATEGY IN THE PUBLICATION DRAFT OF THE LOCAL PLAN AND THE DUTY TO COOPERATE
a. The Duty to Cooperate and the future housing needs of Sheffield
1.1 It is recognised that there is a complex functional and physical relationship between the plan area and Sheffield City. In the past areas of the former rural districts have been incorporated into the City as the city has grown as was the case with Mosborough. Elsewhere the present administrative boundary tightly constrains the city as at times it is contiguous with the green belt (Draft Plan Paragraph 1.21).
1.2 While it is stated (Draft Plan paragraph 1.21) that the councils have worked closely together there is little evidence of this close working actually being effective, particularly in respect of the City Councils Housing Requirement and identifying the level of unmet need.
1.3 Paragraph 1.23 of the plan states that long term economic plans with Sheffield City Region will boost the economic growth of the region with investments in key transport, infrastructure, skills and business support projects.
1.4 It is noted that in paragraph 1.29 the Plan states that the Growth Strategy recognises that there needs to be significant residential development over the next 10 years to meet future requirements and to achieve a better balance between future housing and workforce growth and available employment. It also states that the Growth Strategy sets out to align with the growth plans of the LEPs, specifically Sheffield City Region (SCR) and Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire (D2N2).
1.5 The Pan area sits within two Local Economic Partnership areas; the Sheffield City Region, and the D2N2 economic area covering Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire (paragraph 2.6).
1.6 The Plan recognises (paragraph 2.6) that the Northern Towns relate closely to the Sheffield conurbation and just under a quarter of people commute out of the District to work in the city.
1.7 The council recognise the issue of planning for the economic growth of the two LEP areas but highlight the fact that these strategies have not been developed to such a degree as to provide a sub-regional breakdown in terms of impact on the scale of housing. This is true both for the Pan area but also for Sheffield City (paragraph 4.8).
1.8 In order to bring the plan, forward the SHMA 2017 has made "conservative assumptions" as to the impact of the growth being proposed referred to in this plan as the" Regeneration Scenario" (paragraph 4.9).
1.9 Paragraph 4.10 states that the Plan has adopted the 'Regeneration Scenario' in relation to developing a realistic housing target which:
"Takes into account the potential for higher growth in certain key sectors reflecting both the Council's and wider LEP's Economic Development Strategies."
1.10 The Council state that the reason for adopting this approach is:
a. To reflect a realistic and reasonable future economic growth reflecting the context of the District and sub-region beyond it, including that of the LEPs.
b. To provide support and not constraint for economic growth and delivering regeneration in the District to align with the Local Plan and Growth Strategy objectives.
c. Delivery of more affordable housing. The District's OAN includes an upward adjustment to boost affordable housing delivery and a higher overall Plan figure than the OAN will deliver proportionately higher affordable housing to meet local needs.
1.11 The Council states that it is difficult to determine whether there are any direct impacts of the LEP strategies upon the scale of housing in the Local Plan, given that there has been no sub-regional breakdown (paragraph 4.8). In these circumstances no allowance has been made for unmet need from Sheffield City.
b. The position of Sheffield City Council
1.12 North East Derbyshire Local Plan 2011-2033 (February 2017) Consultation Statement shows the comments made by SCC to the Plan.
1.13 Table 1 below shows the comments made by Sheffield City Council in relation to North East Derbyshire's Initial Draft Plan.
1.14 Table 2 highlights the comments made by SCC to the more recent consultation in 2017.
1.15 The common themes running though the comments from SCC are:
a. the degree of interconnectivity between the northern part of the district and the City with increased commuting expected between these locations;
b. while the City Council are committed to significant green belt release they nevertheless consider it will be necessary for adjoining authorities to make provision for accommodating unmet need
c. the identification of Safeguarded Land is consistent with the aims of the NPPF to ensure enduring Green Belt boundaries
d. while some land parcels adjacent to Sheffield's urban area, which scored red in the council's green belt review actually have locational benefits that could potentially weigh in favour of release
e. the identification of green belt release adjoining the City may be an issue to be picked up through a future review of the North Derbyshire and South Yorkshire Green Belt.

Table 1 North East Derbyshire Local Plan 2011-2033 (February 2017) Consultation Statement Comments by SCC on Initial Draft Plan
Appendix D Representations to Initial Draft Local Plan (Part 1), February 2015
Element Comments
Duty to Co-operate (1697) No agreement has been reached on how any housing 'overspill' from Sheffield might best be accommodated. Although the exact amount of overspill and likely geographical focus is currently unknown, we consider that a strategic review of Green Belt across SCR (including in NED) should be undertaken in accordance with the agreed SCR common approach. In the absence of a firm commitment to undertake a Green Belt review, the Initial Draft does not give Sheffield City Council the comfort that appropriate mechanisms are in place to address any future requests from SCC to accommodate unmet housing needs. We would also recommend that, as far as possible, plan periods across SCR are aligned as new plans are produced in each district.
Housing provision (1698) The target of 6,000 new homes will be an increase from recent housing delivery levels and takes account of the Strategic Housing Market Assessment, economic forecasting and household and population projections.

However, it would appear that this is largely 'trend-based' and does not and cannot yet take account of the ongoing SCR work on job growth and housing across the region.
In our view, the NED Local Plan should reflect the output from the SCR work (Flute model analysis of jobs growth, demographic forecasting by Edge Analytics and SCR growth options by URBED).

No agreement has been reached on how any housing 'overspill' from Sheffield might best be accommodated. Although the exact amount of overspill and likely geographical focus is currently unknown, we consider that a strategic review of Green Belt across SCR (including in NED) should be undertaken in accordance with the agreed SCR common approach. In the absence of a firm commitment to undertake a Green Belt review, the Initial Draft does not give Sheffield City Council the comfort that appropriate mechanisms are in place to address any future requests from SCC to accommodate unmet housing needs. We would also recommend that, as far as possible, plan periods across SCR are aligned as new plans are produced in each district.
Balancing housing and economic growth The "Local Plan objectives" may "provide sufficient flexibility to accommodate changes, as the result of ongoing work related to job growth and housing across the SCR" (para 5.15).
However, Policy LP2: Spatial Strategy, may not provide sufficient flexibility to accommodate changes as the result of ongoing SCR work, in particular possible additional capacity that may be needed to cater for overspill from Sheffield.
The North The level of growth planned for the towns appears low and could be construed as being inconsistent with the stated spatial strategy in Policy LP2 which is to 'focus new development in the Principal and Secondary Towns'. The plan as it is currently drafted is unlikely to include scope to assist with delivering any additional housing in the northern part of the District to meet Sheffield's needs, although it is acknowledged that the likely overspill is not yet quantified, nor is the likely geographical focus determined.
North East Derbyshire Green Belt The SCR Combined Approach to carrying out Green Belt reviews is being used to guide individual authorities' reviews, rather than a single region wide review. We think that a strategic review of Green Belt across the whole SCR is needed now to ensure the most sustainable options for accommodating growth across the city region can be identified.
References to Green Belt 'constraining development' (5.42 and 5.60), may not accord with the thrust of national policy, whereby Green Belt boundaries should be reviewed where necessary, taking into account all relevant local circumstances to ensure objectively-assessed housing needs are met.

Table 2 North East Derbyshire Local Plan 2011-2033 (February 2017) Consultation Statement Comments on by SCC on Consultation Draft (February 2017) Plan
Consultation Draft (February 2017)
Local Plan Vision We note the vision for additional housing as part of the overall growth of NED (in particular the expansion of Dronfield, Killamarsh and Eckington of just over 2000 houses up to 2033, table 4.2). We welcome the acknowledged need for a co-ordinated approach to transport, recognising cross boundary issues. Whilst this growth may increase traffic flows between Sheffield and NED, it could also provide increased travel demand which would help to improve the viability of cross boundary public transport improvements (e.g. P&R in south Sheffield, outlined in 'The Sheffield Plan: Citywide Options for Growth to 2034' Nov 2015).
District-wide Objectives, The Community, D5 Housing for All We are pleased to note that the Plan confirms the intention to meet the objectively assessed housing needs of the District and will not require part of this need to be met within adjacent authorities
Housing Provision The evidence base presented explains how the housing requirement has been arrived at and this appears sensible. The minimum requirement of 300 new homes per year to support economic growth as well as deliver affordable housing will contribute towards the overall economic aspirations of the Sheffield City Region.
Policy SS2: Scale of Development Our response to the consultation in March 2015 highlighted that Sheffield might not be able to accommodate all its own objectively assessed housing need. We will set out the options for meeting our growth later this year, including significant Green Belt release. However, some options may not be deliverable in the short-medium term. It is therefore necessary to approach neighbouring authorities about meeting some of Sheffield's housing needs, particularly in the short to medium term up to 2028. After that, we would expect strategic sites within Sheffield to boost supply up to 2034 and beyond.
Distribution of Growth & the Settlement Hierarchy The strategy to direct growth to the most sustainable settlements is welcomed, and is in line with the aims of the NPPF. Three of the four level one settlements are in the north and therefore have a stronger relationship with Sheffield than Clay Cross in the south. With the majority of housing growth proposed across the four towns and four
strategic sites, this is likely to result in a reasonable amount of new homes being developed in settlements where there are commuting links to Sheffield and where there is an overlap in the housing market with Sheffield.
Table 4.2: Housing Provision We support the 5,740 new homes identified within level 1 and 2 settlements, including 553 at Eckington and 860 at Dronfield. To some extent, delivery of new homes in these locations supports Sheffield's growth, as there is a relationship with Sheffield's urban area, as well as a strong commuting link.
Green Belt Review The Green Belt methodology outlined is different to, but not inconsistent with, Sheffield's approach to Green Belt review. Identification of Safeguarded Land is consistent with the aims of the NPPF to ensure enduring Green Belt boundaries. We note there is recognition within the Green Belt review that some land parcels adjacent to Sheffield's urban area, which scored red, have locational benefits that could potentially weigh in favour of release, although more detailed consideration would be needed.
This may be an issue to be picked up through a future review of the North Derbyshire and South Yorkshire Green Belt.


c. Sheffield City Council - unmet need existing and future
1.16 The Strategic Planning Research Unit (SPRU) produced a report in March 2017 on the 5 Year Housing Land Supply Position of Sheffield City Council. This has been submitted as part of the objections to this plan and it highlighted a range of housing requirements for Sheffield these being:
a. The conclusion of the Joint SHMA is that Sheffield has a housing requirement of between 1,975 and 2,475 dpa (Appendix 1 paragraph 4.29)
b. The SCR report of 2013 (page 56) suggested the OAHN for Sheffield City Council would be in the region of between 2,398 dpa (2010 SNPP) and 3,627 dpa (migration led).
c. SPRU - using 2014 base household projections suggested the following
i. DCLG 2,030 dpa (appendix 1 paragraph 4.17)
ii. 10 year average migration 2,264 dpa (paragraph 4.38),
iii. 10 year average migration plus allowance for constrained household formation 2,684 dpa
iv. The Local Plan Expert Group recommended approach to government 2,952 dpa
1.17 Based upon the most UpToDate evidence available for the city at the time and the calculation of the 5 Year Land Supply and taking into account the following:
a. The use of a 20% rather than 5% buffer in the calculation of the land supply.
b. The exclusion of new student developments in the calculation for meeting OAHN.
c. The removal of sites allocated that were identified in the revoked sites and allocations plan without planning permission as these are genuinely deliverable in the period to 2021.
d. The removal of sites which do not have either an extant application or an allocation are not genuinely deliverable in the period to 2021.
e. The removal of double counting resulting from the council's inclusion of both windfall sites and small sites with planning permission.
1.18 This resulted, in a five year land position for Sheffield City Council's (2016-2021) of only 1.24 years supply of housing land.
1.19 Even if the DCLG household projection are used the shortfall is still less than 3 years (2.98 years Appendix 1 table 14 page 44).
1.20 As referred to in the SPRU objection to policy SS2 the Government consulted last year (2017) on "Planning for Homes in the Right Places" which included both a standardised calculation for housing need but also an example of the approach applied to each planning authority area.
1.21 The Draft Guidance Published for consultation in March 2018 reaffirms the approach in calculating the OAN as set out in the previous September 2017 consultation.
1.22 For Sheffield the standardised approach would require some 2,093 dpa, slightly higher than the 2,0030 dpa used to calculate the sub 3 years supply of land in table 14 Appendix 1 (page 44).
1.23 Even taking account of the most recent evidence of net completions from MHCLG the average level of completions in Sheffield is significantly below the level of housing required to meet the standardised approach as illustrated by the past rate of net completions. It should be noted that the government live tables are used here rather than the council's own figures as these are the source of figures that will be used for the delivery test proposed in the Draft Framework.

Table 3 Sheffield City Council - Net additions to stock

Source MHCLG live tables Net additions to stock
1.24 The number of additional dwellings that would be required if the level of apartment building and student developments continues would be in the region of 637 to 852 dpa.
Table 4 MHCLG live tables: Average net additions to stock
2016-17 16 year average 10 year average 5 year average
Average net additions to stock 1,241 1,380 1,456
Additional dwellings required to meet MHCLG Standardised OAN of 2,093 852 713 637
Source MHCLG live tables Net additions to stock & DCLG consultation table

1.25 There are however both policy and market constraints that mean the rates of delivery of apartments and student accommodation should not be relied upon to meet the majority of the city's housing need over the next 20 years. Nevertheless, the evidence suggests that at least 637 to 852 dpa will need to be provided in other locations not presently available in the city suggesting a scale of the new allocations of between 12,740 and 17,040 dwellings.
1.26 Given that Sheffield City Council are unable to demonstrate a 5 year housing land supply, and there is clearly no clarity as to whether the scale of need that can be met within the city's boundaries then a sound plan for NEDDC must make provisional sites available through the identification of Safeguarded Land in sustainable locations in order to accommodate this unmet need in the near future when the overall level of unmet need is clarified.
d. The definition of the Housing Market Area
1.27 Given the clear strong relationship between the northern Towns of the district and Sheffield City it is difficult to understand why the areas housing needs have been assessed as part of a housing sub area which includes Bassetlaw with which NEDDC has a far weaker relationship with than Sheffield City.
1.28 This approach is we accept common place amongst consultants working for councils who fairly regularly prepare evidence to exclude Cities which are the main generator of jobs and population from more localised rural based HMA's. The advantage of this approach is clear in that it places at arm's length the issues of having to deal with meeting the needs of the city as part of considering the constraint polices in the rural areas.
1.29 The result of such separation between cities and their rural hinterlands is that issue of unmet need are left unresolved, and inspectors faced with either finding a plan unsound or recommending adoption leaving the issue to be resolved by an "early review" are left with an unenvious task of having to accept a plan that does not resolve the issue of unmet needs on the almost certain knowledge that an early review will not actually occur.
1.30 Reviewing the evidence base on the council's web site reveals that there is no clear evidential background being relied upon for the definition of the Housing Market Area that has be selected. The listed evidence base on housing need is s follows:
a. Local Plan 2014-2034 (Publication Draft)
b. Housing: Considering NED OAN Final Report February 2018
c. North Derbyshire & Bassetlaw SHMA-OAN Update 2017
d. SHMA-Sensitivity Testing Analysis, March 14
e. North Derbyshire & Bassetlaw SHMA 2013
f. Housing Needs, Market & Affordability Study (HNMA), 2011. Summary, Appendices
1.31 The approach that should be adopted in these circumstances is to make sure that there is sufficient Safeguarded Land that could be brought forward in accordance with policy once the needs of the City have been identified.
1.32 A simple review of both migration and travel to work patterns form the 2011 census highlights that rather than being a peripheral influence on the District, Sheffield City has by far the strongest relationship with the District both economically and demographically. This is illustrated by the tables below.
1.33 These tables show that Sheffield is the focus for 10.8% of movements from NEDDC a higher percentage that any of the districts in the proposed HMA with the exception of Chesterfield (12.9%) and that 16% of NEDDC resident workforce work in Sheffield, again only Chesterfield is higher.

Table 5 Movement between Selected LPA's
usual residence
address one year ago Sheffield Bassetlaw Bolsover Chesterfield North East Derbyshire
Sheffield 52,897 219 151 331 953
Bassetlaw 331 6,147 153 41 22
Bolsover 106 199 3,395 317 321
Chesterfield 301 73 336 5,728 944
North East Derbyshire 745 40 292 890 3,243
Percentage of all movement Sheffield Bassetlaw Bolsover Chesterfield North East Derbyshire
Sheffield 74.1% 0.3% 0.2% 0.5% 1.3%
Bassetlaw 3.3% 61.5% 1.5% 0.4% 0.2%
Bolsover 1.6% 3.1% 52.6% 4.9% 5.0%
Chesterfield 3.3% 0.8% 3.6% 62.1% 10.2%
North East Derbyshire 10.8% 0.6% 4.2% 12.9% 46.9%
Source: Nomis 2018 (census 2011)
Table 6 Place of work and Usual Residence for selected LPA's
place of work
currently residing in Sheffield Bassetlaw Bolsover Chesterfield North East Derbyshire
Sheffield 161,004 884 706 3,226 3,642
Bassetlaw 1,829 26,770 1,007 330 181
Bolsover 1,404 1,658 8,869 3,314 1,543
Chesterfield 3,137 362 1,695 23,428 4,423
North East Derbyshire 8,742 347 1,583 8,375 9,735
England and Wales 224,697 42,931 24,184 44,777 23,149
currently residing in Sheffield Bassetlaw Bolsover Chesterfield North East Derbyshire
Sheffield 72% 2% 3% 7% 16%
Bassetlaw 1% 62% 4% 1% 1%
Bolsover 1% 4% 37% 7% 7%
Chesterfield 1% 1% 7% 52% 19%
North East Derbyshire 4% 1% 7% 19% 42%
England and Wales 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Source: Nomis 2018 (census 2011)
1.34 More recent evidence from the 2016 Mid-Year Estimates suggest that movements from Sheffield into NEDDC have increased from the 953 in the 2011 census to 1,214. This is an increase of 27% while movements from NEDDC into Sheffield have decreased from 745 in 2011 to 665 a decrease of 12%.

Table 7 MYE 2016 migration between selected LPA'S
to
2016 MYE from Sheffield Bassetlaw Bolsover Chesterfield North East Derbyshire
Sheffield 223 219 414 1,214
North East Derbyshire 665 50 384 812
2016 Mid year Estimates ONS
1.35 This most recent evidence appears to suggest a growing importance of NEDDC as a location for accommodating migration out of Sheffield.
e. NEDDC Duty to Cooperate Draft Statement of Compliance
1.36 In paragraphs 11 to 14 which highlights the strategic geography of the area there is no mention of Sheffield except for the train service. This ignores the evidence of substantial social and economic connections between NEDDC and Sheffield.
1.37 In paragraph 20 to 22 reference is made to the HMA, however as outlined above there is actually no evidence presented to justify this HMA and the exclusion of Sheffield appears to be a decision of convenience rather than of evidence.
1.38 Sheffield City council is not identified as a "strategic partner" in paragraphs 23 to 28 instead based on weak relationships with parts of Sheffield city region (beyond Sheffield) the council claim that they play a full part in cross boundary working with the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise partnership. The summary makes it clear that this working includes the sharing of reports but does not go to the fundamental strategic issue with regards to housing which is identifying unmet needs and reaching conclusions as to where these needs maybe met. This is beyond the scope of the LEP and the associated working groups.
1.39 The fact that Sheffield has been erroneously excluded form the HMA results in an inaccuracies assessment of housing need within what should have been the wider HMA. As highlighted in our objections to the plan at the regulation 19 stage there is little evidence to support the selection of the HMA as currently proposed.
1.40 Sheffield City Council should have been identified as a Strategic Partner rather than being marginalised in the DtC process.
1.41 In respect of dealing with cross boundary needs the failure of the council's consultants top properly define the HMA has and will cause considerable problems in the future planning of the district and the neighbouring City of Sheffield. The approach is clearly ineffective for the planning of the wider area and therefore unsound in the context the Framework's test of soundness.
1.42 In terms of meetings Sheffield needs this is addressed in just 2 places within the report, these being paragraph 37 and table 5. In table 5 SCC's response is actually the response of the Sheffield City Region Planning Officers group and not that of the City Council. These responses relate to Rotherham and do not deal with the unmet need in Sheffield which is raised separately by SCC in their responses to the earlier consultation.
1.43 As has been highlighted earlier it would appear that the only evidence of cooperation between SCC and NEDDC are the formal responses to the formal consultation which are summarised in tables 1 and 2 in this report. This is not evidence of effective cooperation there have in fact been no identifiable outcomes either in terms of defining the issues such as the size of the potential shortfall in housing or any strategic approach to deal with the shortfall.
1.44 Paragraph 37 highlights the complete stagnation of the DtC process in relation to this plan as well as highlighting a major shortfall in the published Sustainability Assessment in support of the plan.
1.45 This paragraph highlights that discussions did take place regarding a large urban extension in the Norton area into North East Derbyshire green belt but that both authorities "acknowledged" there were significant environmental issues and as such the option was unlikely to be pursued.
1.46 This highlights a number of fundamental failings in the plan preparation stage and the DtC. These are:
a. There are no records of these meeting or discussions
b. There has been no indication as to what the "acknowledged" environmental issues are
c. There has been no assessment of the impact on these alleged environmental issues against the clear economic and social benefits of meeting Sheffield's housing needs in a very sustainable location (Norton has good access to high level public transport routes into the city centre as well as local services and facilities).
d. This is clearly a reasonable alternative in the tests of the Sustainability Assessment and should have been assessed as part of that analysis. Failure to assess such alternatives means that the SA does not meet its legal requirements.
1.47 The paragraph (37) concludes that the remains unresolved with no formal agreement between NEDDC and SCC whether to consider the proposal further or discount it on the grounds of "unacceptable environmental impact".
1.48 This conclusion in the DtC Compliance Statement suggests a different picture to that summarised in the green Belt Topic paper which states in paragraph 4.55:
"On the other hand whilst Sheffield have confirmed that there is no additional supply within Sheffield's existing built-up area that could be developed in principle to meet North East Derbyshire's housing target, they have indicated that they would welcome the opportunity to discuss whether the potential for a cross-boundary urban extension should be considered further or discounted on the basis of environmental impact"
1.49 This confusion between the Green Belt Topic paper and the DtC Draft Statement of Compliance highlights:
a. that the DtC to date has been totally ineffective on what is potentially a major strategic proposal,
b. that decisions are being made without any evidence base on environmental impacts
c. that decisions are not being informed by an assessment of the benefits and impacts of proposals as legally required in the context of local plan making though an assessment within the SA. This balance of impact and benefits is also required by the Framework.
d. Leaving the issues unresolved renders the plan unsound as there is clearly the potential that NEDDC green belt on the edge of Sheffield may need amended in the very near future should SCC conclude that this is the most sustainable location to accommodate their unmet need. It is noted that from the response of neighbouring Authorities none have been willing to accept NEDDC unmet need so a different response to the same request from SCC is highly unlikely.
f. The guidance on the Duty to Cooperate
1.50 Local Plan making authorities have a duty to cooperate on planning issues that cross administrative boundaries, particularly those which relate to the strategic priorities set out in paragraph 156 (NPPF paragraph 178).
1.51 The purpose of joint working is that it should enable local planning authorities to work together to meet development requirements which cannot wholly be met within their own areas. This is clearly the situation with Sheffield.
1.52 According to the NPPF paragraph 14 a sound plan is required to be flexible and Policies should have sufficient flexibility to adapt to rapid change (and be flexible enough to accommodate needs not anticipated in the plan and to allow a rapid response to changes in economic circumstances (NPPF paragraph 21)
1.53 According to the Framework Local Authorities when reviewing Green Belt boundaries are required to have regard to their intended permanence in the long term, so that they should be capable of enduring beyond the plan period (paragraph 83)
1.54 The NPPF paragraph 84 highlights that when drawing up or reviewing Green Belt boundaries local planning authorities should take account of the need to promote sustainable patterns of development
1.55 The NPPF specifically addresses the issues being faced by NEDDC in this situation and provides the following guidance in paragraph 85:
a. where necessary, identify in their plans areas of 'safeguarded land' between the urban area and the Green Belt, in order to meet longer-term development needs stretching well beyond the plan period;
b. make clear that the safeguarded land is not allocated for development at the present time. Planning permission for the permanent development of safeguarded land should only be granted following a Local Plan review which proposes the development;
c. satisfy themselves that Green Belt boundaries will not need to be altered at the end of the development plan period
1.56 The lack of meaningful engagement between NEDDC and the City Council mean that as currently proposed the level of green belt release will only support the level of need that has been calculated for the district and the wider issue of unmet need in Sheffield has not been effectively addressed. It is accepted that the City Council have been unable to determine their OAN, nevertheless there is sufficient evidence to reach a conclusion regarding the range or scale of unmet need and this should have been used to inform the identification of Safeguarded land within the Draft Submission Plan.
g. Conclusion on the Duty to Cooperate
1.57 The present evidence on the DtC including the most recent published "DtC Draft Statement of compliance) fails to meet the policy requirements in NPPF Paragraph 181 for the following reasons:
a. Local planning authorities will be expected to demonstrate evidence of having effectively cooperated to plan for issues with cross-boundary impacts when their Local Plans are submitted for examination. At present there is no clear evidence of how the local plan will address the issue of un met need from Sheffield. The fact that the final level of unmet need is not in itself an excuse not to make provision within the plan, at least in the form of safeguarded land. It is clear that reasonable alternatives for meeting Sheffield needs have been excluded without the gathering of a proportionate evidence base and without the consideration of both the impacts and benefits in a SA. The evidence that does exist summarised in section ? below does not suggest that release of sites on the edge of the city will have the claimed "unacceptable environmental impacts"
b. Demonstration of cooperation by reference to approval by a joint committee, a memorandum of understanding or a jointly prepared strategy which is presented as evidence of an agreed position. There is no evidence of an agreed position. There is no evidence of the bi-partite meetings of SCC and NEDDC in which the SCC unmet needs are discussed. The only evidence is the response form the SCR officers Group and the responses to formal consultation from Sheffield. There is no Statement of Common Ground or memorandum of understanding
c. Demonstration that cooperation has been a continuous process of engagement from initial thinking through to implementation, resulting in a final position where plans are in place to provide the land and infrastructure necessary to support current and projected future levels of development. The evidence is that the process of cooperation between SCC and NEDDC has not been continuous and that the issue of unmet need although identified over the whole of the plan preparation process has simply been side-lined, partly assisted no doubt by the curious decision as to the area to be covered by the HMA. Cooperation has not been evidenced and that which does exist suggest that it is sporadic and completely ineffective.
1.58 The Draft Submission Plan fails the test of soundness in paragraph 182 for the following reasons:
a. Positively prepared - while the plan seeks to meet its own objectively assessed development and infrastructure requirements, it has not been able to quantify the level of unmet requirements from Sheffield, notwithstanding that it is entirely reasonable that it should do so. Furthermore, rather than implementing a policy approach that is capable of responding positively to this need once it is identified in a way that is consistent with achieving sustainable development;
b. Justified - the plan is not the most appropriate strategy, it has not considered the reasonable alternatives, in terms of how future unmet need from Sheffield might be accommodated and it has not sought to use a proportionate evidence base to identify the range of any unmet need;
c. Effective - the plan is not based on effective joint working on cross-boundary strategic priorities, while there has been cross boundary discussion these have been inefficient; and
d. Consistent with national policy - the plan does not enable the delivery of sustainable development in accordance with the policies in the Framework as it is inflexible and has not undertaken the green belt review with reference to the unmet need from Sheffield. While the scale of the need is undefined a flexible plan would have identified a number of potential green belt releases to be protected as safeguarded land and only released if and when they are required to meet Sheffield needs.



2.0 IMPLICATION OF FAILURE TO CONSIDER REASONABLE ALTERNATIVES FOR ACCOMMODATING SHEFFIELD UNMET NEED FOR THE STATUS OF THE SUSTAINABILITY APPRAISAL
2.1 The Sustainability Appraisal (February 2018) states that the Housing Land Availability Assessment (published 2017) identified 500 sites, 180 of which were assessed against the SA Framework in a cluster analysis process. The remaining sites were screened on the basis of:
"1. Availability;
2. Five Dwellings and above;
3. Without substantial flood risk;
4. Not within a European designated conservation site;
5. Without substantial hazardous risk;
6. In a sustainable location: near an existing settlement boundary and within the 15 most sustainable settlements for housing development in the District (as identified in the Settlement Hierarchy Study, 2016); and
7. Not within the Green Belt, unless the site has been identified within the Green Belt Review as not, or only partially, meeting Green Belt purposes."
2.2 In St Albans v. SSCLG [2010] J.P.L. 70: the ER for the East of England Plan assessed alternatives for proposed Greenfield urban extensions to Hemel Hempstead, Welwyn Garden City and Hatfield, but not alternatives to them. Mitting J held that this was unlawful (paragraph 21):
"It is no answer to point to the requirement in the policies for green belt reviews to be undertaken at the local development framework stage. All that will do is to determine where within the district of the three towns erosion will occur, not whether it should occur there at all."
2.3 In this case, Green Belt release had to be considered against its alternative of no Green Belt release. The opposite must also hold true.
2.4 In this case the consideration of reasonable alternatives would be to consider the allocation of safeguarded sites rather than dismissing the concept of safeguarded sites on the ground that the level of need was uncertain.
2.5 The DtC Draft Statement of Compliance paragraph 37 makes it clear that SCC and NEDDC have not reached a conclusion on the potential for a large scale urban extension at Norton so this is a reasonable alternative which should have been considered and has not been. The SA fails to consider reasonable alternatives.
2.6 While it is noted that the DtC states that the urban extension at Norton to meet Sheffield's unmet needs has "unacceptable environmental impacts" it appears that the council has reached this opinion without reference to any evidence base. The way that these decisions should be reached is though the SA process.
2.7 Furthermore it would have also been appropriate to consider a variety of potentially smaller sites on the edge of the city that could be released to meet different levels of unmet need in Sheffield.

If you are having trouble using the system, please try our help guide.