Worthing Local Plan Main Modifications Consultation - April 2022

The Worthing Local Plan

The Local Plan will be a key document in shaping the future of the borough over a 15-year period as it provides the strategy for growth, setting out what development will take place and where. When adopted, the new Plan will replace the borough's existing local planning policies and will be an important consideration in deciding planning applications.

After a number of years of preparation, evidence gathering and engagement the Council published the Submission Draft Worthing Local Plan for consultation in January 2021. The Plan and all comments received were submitted to the Secretary of State for Examination in June. The Submission Draft Worthing Local Plan and associated evidence base documents can be found on the:

Purpose of this consultation

The Submission Draft Worthing Local Plan (SDWLP) was submitted for Examination in June 2021. Inspector Steven Lee BA(Hons) MA MRTPI was appointed by the Secretary of State to hold an independent examination of the Worthing Local Plan. The purpose of the examination is to determine whether the Plan is sound and has complied with necessary legal requirements. The Inspector held examination hearings in November 2021.

Following the close of the Hearing Sessions, in December the Council received the Inspector's Post Hearing Advice Letter (IL07) which sets out the proposed changes or Main Modifications (MMs) needed to ensure that the Worthing Local Plan is legally compliant and passes the government's tests of 'soundness':

The Inspector has asked that we consult on these proposed Main Modifications (MMs). The proposed MMs are put forward without prejudice to the Inspector's final conclusions.

The Schedule of Main Modifications identifies specific changes to the wording of certain policies and supporting text of the Submission Draft Worthing Local Plan Jan 2021 (as submitted for examination). Consequential changes needed to the Policies Maps are set in a separate Mapping Extracts Document. This document sets out the amendments proposed for the Local Plan Policies Map. These relate to the Main Modifications to the Submission version of the Local Plan and may be necessary to ensure policies in the Plan are sound. Any comments on this document should relate only to the changes identified and no other issues.

In addition, the Council has published Additional Modifications (AMs) which are non-consequential changes and are not necessary for soundness. These changes make the Plan clearer and provide factual updates but don't materially affect the implementation of the plan policies. Please note that the Council is not inviting comments on the Additional Modifications - this has been published just for information purposes only.

It should be noted that this is a focussed consultation relating just to the proposed Main Modifications and related documents and that this is not an opportunity to comment on or object to other areas of the Plan which remain unchanged.

The documents published for consultation at this 'Modification' stage are:

The proposed modifications made to the Policies Maps set out in MOD4 above have been incorporated within the maps below:

Please note: due to the complexity of the maps they cannot be accessibility checked.

FAQs - frequently asked questions

Given the technical nature of the Main Modifications consultation, the Council has prepared an FAQ document to enable a greater understanding of the consultation:

Main Modifications Schedule

The Council has prepared an accessible version of the Main Modifications Schedule for users of assistive technology such as a screen reader. Chapter versions of the Main Modifications are also available to download as well as the complete document:

Additional Documents

There are a number of other additional documents notes that were produced during the hearing sessions at the request of the Inspector to respond to issues raised and to help clarify and support the Council's position. These documents have informed the Main Modifications and are also available for comment.

In response to some concerns that were raised during the Hearing Sessions the Council has prepared an addendum to the Sustainability Appraisal providing an update to Section 5.2. This document, which provides additional clarity on how options were appraised, is available for comment:

How to view the consultation documents

All relevant documents are available to view on the Council's website. Hard copies of the consultation documents including the Accessible Version can be viewed at:

Worthing Town Hall Reception, Chapel Road, Worthing, BN11 1HA

Please note that the Town Hall is open to the public 9:00am to 5:00pm, Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays)

When comments must be made

The consultation runs for 6 weeks between 5th April and 17th May 2022.

Representations must be received by the deadline of 23:59pm on Tuesday 17th May 2022.

Only those representations made by email or writing submitted within the specified consultation period will have a right to be considered by the Planning Inspector. Please be aware that all representations received by the council will be publicly available (personal contact details will not be published).

How to make comments

Comments must be submitted in writing either

By email:

Or by post:

  • Worthing Planning Policy, Worthing Town Hall, Chapel Road, Worthing, BN11 1HA

Guidance on making comments

Please note that representations are only to be made on the proposed Main Modifications documents and additional documents. There is also no need to repeat representations that have been submitted previously and which have already been provided to the Planning Inspector.

Please clearly indicate which document you are responding to. The Main Modifications (MM) proposed are numbered MM1 to MM57 - please include the relevant MM number within your response.

You should provide succinctly all the evidence and supporting information necessary to support your comment.

If you are part of a representative organisation or group of individuals who share a common view on the Plan, it would be helpful to make a single representation, rather than submitting many separate representations repeating the same points. If you are working as a group, please tell us who you are representing and how your representation has been agreed/authorised.

Government guidance states that to be adopted, a plan must be 'sound', meaning it should be:

  • Positively prepared (meeting the area's needs; informed by agreements with other authorities)
  • Justified (appropriate; taking into account reasonable alternatives; based on proportionate evidence)
  • Effective (deliverable over the plan period; based on effective joint working with other local authorities on cross-boundary strategic matters)
  • Consistent with national policy.
  • Legal compliance means if the Plan has been prepared in accordance with regulations and complies with the duty to cooperate.

If you wish to make a representation on a Main Modification, including any suggested changes to a Main Modification, you should make clear how your comments relate to the tests of soundness, the legal compliance and duty to cooperate.

Next stages

The representations will be sent to the Inspector for his consideration.

Only those representations made by email or writing which arrive at the address specified within the specified consultation period will have a right to be considered.

The Inspector will consider all the representations made before finalising the examination report and the schedule of recommended Main Modifications (MMs).

Normally, all issues arising from the consultation on the MMs should be capable of being considered through the written representations procedure. Further hearing sessions will only be necessary exceptionally.

All respondents at this, and previous stages, will be notified at appropriate times as the Plan progresses towards adoption. Interested parties who might not already be on the Council's Planning Policy database can register for updates by contacting the Planning Policy Team on:

Privacy Notice

Please be aware that all representations received by the council will be publicly available (personal contact details will not be published). The Council's privacy notice can be read here:

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Page last updated: 11 May 2022

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