A PLANNING strategy that will shape future development has been approved by New Forest District Council.

The Local Plan 2016-2036 Part One is the new planning strategy for New Forest District (NFDC) for areas outside of the New Forest National Park. It sets out policies for the scale and location of new development needed to 2036.

In Fordingbridge, the plan has earmarked developments of at least 140 homes on land to the north of Station Road and Ashford with at least 330 more on land at Whitsbury Road.

This would be in addition to the 145 homes which have already been permitted. But a modification to the plan had been recommended to include an additional parcel of land at Burgate, for a further 50 homes - increasing the figure from at least 350 to 400.

In Ringwood, earmarks at least 480 new homes for land north of Moortown Lane and 270 homes on land to the north of Hightown Road.

The new strategy, which has been adopted, will now form part of the development plan for the district, within which all planning decisions will be made.

Councillor Edward Heron, pictured below, the portfolio holder for planning and infrastructure and deputy leader, said: “The planning strategy ensures the long-term protection of internationally significant environmental sites, the Green Belt, and the landscape and townscape character of the area whilst providing the right amount and mix of new homes, affordable homes, jobs and facilities that our communities and businesses need.

“The Local Plan can now be adopted as the statutory basis for planning decisions the council will make about development proposed in our area.”

Salisbury Journal:

The new plan, which covers the period up to 2036 sets out the planning strategy for the area during that period and includes provision for a significant increase in housing building across the district and employment growth, outside the National Park.

The plan allocates additional land for new housing development at Totton, Marchwood, New Milton, Ringwood and Fordingbridge in particular, and promotes the redevelopment of the Fawley Power Station site as a new community with some 1380 new homes, and employment growth.

The council says the plan aims to direct a significant proportion of this new development towards housing tenures which will be affordable to local people, with all new development making a positive social, economic and environmental contribution to the community and business life of the area. NFDC has also put in place policies to ensure new development has no adverse impact on environmentally sensitive areas in and around the district.

The plan has been through a 17-month examination inspection which included public hearings in the summer of 2019, and a public consultation. Following adoption there is a statutory six-week period for legal challenges.

The council is now working on Local Plan 2016-2036 Part Two.