In an Extraordinary Council of Brentwood Borough Council on Wednesday 15th November, the Council included within their agenda a Local Plan update. This provided a table of the proposed allocation sites and a comparison of the number of proposed new homes, against new delivery numbers.
THe government has revised the way that housing need is determined. This has increased the number of homes which Brentwood Borough must deliver. It looks like the number has increased from 364 to 380 homes per year, but a consultation document issued by the government suggests that this could increase further to 454 homes per year. This is, in part, a reflection of the lack of affordability in Brentwood. These revised numbers could come into effect as soon as April 2018, so Brentwood Borough Council are trying to prepare for this possibility.
The update on the Local Plan identifies that the Ingatestone Garden Centre can provide 110 homes. This is consistent with Redrow’s proposal for the site.
In addition, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sajid Javid, has written to Brentwood Borough Council following a written statement in parliament on 16th November. In his written statement, Mr Javid highlighted his concerns for the progress of 15 local planning authorities – including Brentwood – for recently either failing the duty to co-operate protocols, or failing to meet the deadlines set out in their local development schemes.
In accordance to Sajid Javid’s statement, Brentwood Borough Council has until 31st January 2018 to forward any exceptional circumstances which justify a failure to produce a Local Plan under the 2004 Act regime, to avoid government intervention.