South Worcestershire Development Plan adopted by councils

The South Worcestershire Development Plan, designed to provide jobs and homes up to 2030, has been fully adopted. The Plan will boost the local economy and deliver sustainable development.

Malvern Hills District Council, Worcester City Council and Wychavon District Council – the three partners involved in the preparation of the Plan – have each met this week and approved the adoption of the SWDP.

The Plan will enable the development of nearly 300 hectares of employment land and the building of 28,400 new homes between 2006 and 2030. A significant amount of the development included in it has already taken place or planning permission has already been given.

The SWDP has been jointly prepared by the three councils over a period of more than five years and has been the subject of multiple public consultations and a Public Examination conducted by a Government-appointed Inspector.

His report concluded earlier this month that, with modifications that have already been consulted on and approved by the three councils, the Plan is sound and legally compliant.

Councillor Melanie Baker, who chairs the SWDP Joint Advisory Panel, said: “The Plan is all about ensuring residents can find the homes and the jobs they need to enjoy happy and successful lives and careers in south Worcestershire. The SWDP will also help us achieve the economic growth our area needs over the next 14 years and deliver a range of jobs and housing, including a proportion of affordable homes, to help people get on to the property ladder.

“Adoption of the SWDP allows the three councils to drive sustainable development, and promote homes and jobs in suitable locations that are supported by the appropriate infrastructure and services. It will also give greater powers to resist speculative planning applications for unsustainable or harmful development on sites that are not allocated in the SWDP.

“I would like to thank all the officers who have worked so hard on this Plan, the members of all three councils for providing their input and giving it their approval – particularly those who sat on the Joint Advisory Panel – and, most importantly, the residents of south Worcestershire for engaging with the many public consultations we have held over the Plan.”

In addition to the much needed new homes, the SWDP sets out plans for just over 300 hectares of vital employment land as well as new retail provision focused in Worcester City and the main towns. 

The new housing is all set to be built within or on the edges of existing settlements. Development in smaller villages without key services or in the open countryside has generally been avoided, although there will be some new housing in larger villages with local services, especially where planning permission was granted during the preparation of the SWDP.

Full details of the Plan are available at