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Tackling the climate & ecological emergency together

Peoples Assemblies on the Dorset Local Plan

Dorset Council was formed in May 2019 from five district local authorities. Each of those district authorities had what is called a ‘Local Plan’.  Dorset Council has now brought these together to create one Local Plan for the whole of the Dorset Council area.

The new Local Plan is now out for public consultation which ends on 15 March 2021.

The Plan will last at least until 2038, so will shape all development for the next 17 years – that’s a long time.  And anything built in that time will leave a legacy lasting for several generations. 

We cannot afford to get it wrong.

So what exactly is a Local Plan, why do we have to have one and what does it cover?

It is a legal requirement that local authorities have a plan. Before the plan can be implemented it has to be ‘approved’ by the Planning Inspectorate.  The process is very complex and very long. The timetable for this one being agreed will not be until spring 2023.

A council’s planning policies are set out in Local Plans which are the legal starting point in agreeing, or refusing, any planning applications.

The Local Plan outlines the strategy for meeting the needs of the area such as housing, employment, community services and facilities including schools, shops, retail and leisure

Dorset Council say: “The plan directs development to the most suitable locations near to existing facilities, and detailed policies promote high quality development that respects and enhances the character of each local area. The plan also protects Dorset’s natural environment and contributes towards the mitigation and adaptation to climate change”.

But where do you think things like new housing should be built?  How many homes do we need?  Is it the right housing e.g. how it’s built, materials used, rental or ownership, affordable, social, etc? How do we ensure we have jobs in the areas close to where we live? What sort of industry and jobs suit our areas? How will people travel in their community and between communities and towns? Will new buildings, homes and businesses meet the urgent need to reduce carbon emissions? Which areas should we protect as our natural environment, which should we re-wild or use for tree-planting

We encourage everyone to take a look at the draft plan documentation and to put in their own consultation submission.  Here’s the link:


Act Now and Have Your Say! Help Create a Future Vision for Dorset

Town and Parish Council’s across Dorset are looking at the draft plan and will be putting in submissions to the consultation.

Some are also keen to hear everyone’s thoughts and ideas. So they asked if assemblies could be arranged to do this.  The assemblies are open to all.

Please join one of our People’s Assemblies using this zoom link:  

Or phone in: 0203 901 7895. Meeting ID: 853 9969 4343

Sun 28th Feb 4pm-6pm for Dorchester Area

Sat 6th March 2pm-4pm – Dorset wide

Come along and discuss with others. Everyone welcome!

DT Action Plan poster - Dorchester

Here is a Word document version of the Local Plan Consultation, you can email it directly to:

Also handy to write your comments and copy to the online consultation (as it has no save button)

Dorset Local Plan Response Form WORD COPY

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