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Monday, November 12, 2018

Have your say on West Lancashire Borough Council's Local Plan Review

The public consultation has now opened for you to have your say on the West Lancashire Borough Council's blueprint for the future of the area.

The Local Plan Preferred Options document approved by the Council's Cabinet for public consultation is for an innovative and ambitious long term strategic plan that will help deliver new development to support the growth of the Borough until 2050. By releasing enough land for development needs for 30+ years, the Council will be in a better position to refuse any applications for development not in line with the Local Plan.

Key proposals include:

  • New homes and employment space in and around Skelmersdale, including an ambitious initiative to create three new Garden Villages and a Logistics Park alongside the M58. This proposal would make a significant contribution to the business case for creating a Skelmersdale Rail Link.
  • An impressive Knowledge Park and Student Accommodation Village on St Helens Road, Ormskirk, to attract new, hi-tech businesses to Ormskirk and provide much-needed purpose-built student accommodation to alleviate the demand for houses of multiple occupation, and the creation of new residential neighbourhoods to the south-east of Ormskirk and Aughton
  • Allocation of land for smaller opportunities for new developments in the rest of the Borough to meet local housing and employment needs.

Some land currently designated as Green Belt will be released for development, but the Preferred Options will also ensure that the rural areas of the Borough will continue to be strongly protected from inappropriate development (over 88% of West Lancashire will remain as Green Belt).

The Consultation period starts today (12 October 2018) and the Council has extended the deadline for people to give their views to 13 December 2018.

Councillor John Hodson, portfolio holder for Planning, said: "I would urge people living and working in West Lancashire, and all other interested parties, to take part in this consultation as this will influence how the new Local Plan takes shape. This will in time dictate how the new Local Plan guides how West Lancashire develops over time. All reasonable views will be taken into consideration.

"As such, if people are objecting to a proposal, we would always encourage them to also set out how they would change the policy they are objecting to or what site they would suggest the Council should allocate instead of the one they are objecting to, and to give planning reasons for their objections. This will help the Council prepare the best possible Local Plan.”

To read the Local Plan Review Preferred Options document, and for more information on the Local Plan Review, please visit the Council's website www.westlancs.gov.uk/lpr, where you can also give your views to be considered as part of the consultation. Printed copies of key consultation documents will also be available at libraries and the Council Customer Service Points (at the Council's Derby Street offices in Ormskirk and at the Concourse Shopping Centre in Skelmersdale).

The easiest way to provide your comments will be online, through the consultation webpages, but a standard form can also be downloaded from the website or picked up from the above locations.

The Council is organising Local Plan public consultation events where people can speak directly to a Council officer about the plan. Each event will run from 10am until 9pm, but people will need to pre-book a half hourly appointment slot for a time that suits them online or over the phone before the day of the event. There will be a maximum of six people in each appointment to ensure everyone gets to ask their questions and discuss their views. Visit www.westlancs.gov.uk/lpr to book an appointment or call 01695 585194.

People who turn up without booking in advance will not be able to come into the event. Groups of more than six people will not be allowed in.

The dates and venues for the Local Plan consultation events are:

  • Tuesday 23 October - Four Lane Ends Mission, Bickerstaffe
  • Wednesday 24 October - Ormskirk Chapel Gallery
  • Monday 29 October - Parbold Village Hall
  • Wednesday 31 October - Skelmersdale Ecumenical Centre
  • Monday 5 November - Tarleton Cricket Club
  • Wednesday 7 November - Ormskirk Chapel Gallery
  • Tuesday 13 November - The Grove Youth and Community Centre, Station Approach, Burscough
  • Wednesday 14 November - Skelmersdale Ecumenical Centre
  • Thursday 15 November - Halsall Memorial Hall

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