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The Local Plan for Buckinghamshire

News about the Local Plan

Wider call for sites

We recently finished a wider call for sites, including greenfield sites. This will help us gather a fuller understanding of the land available for development within Buckinghamshire.

The call for sites closed on 11 September 2022. We may still consider sites submitted after that date.

Anyone can send in suggestions.

To tell us about a site see Wider call for sites.

All sites submitted through the wider call for sites (and previous calls for sites) will be technically assessed in the Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (HELAA).


A Local Plan shows where development can happen, and protected places where it needs to be carefully controlled.

The Local Plan is the prime consideration when determining planning applications, unless material considerations indicate otherwise. A material consideration is a matter that should be taken into account in deciding a planning application or an appeal.

It draws up rules, known as policies, for how development happens. Development policies can cover a wide range of things that development must do, such as:

  • building the right number and size of homes
  • creating good places to live, which include shops and places to play
  • contributing to the infrastructure needed to serve the homes, such as roads, schools, and health facilities
  • protecting the environment by supporting wildlife, beautiful landscapes and historic places, and managing flood risk

A Local Plan also provides an opportunity for us to set out how we intend to manage current growth issues and address new and emerging agendas.

Our requirements

We must produce a Local Plan within five years of coming into being, that is, by April 2025. Having an up-to-date plan in place brings benefits for Buckinghamshire.

Local Plan aims

It aims to deliver sustainable development through:

  • meeting the social, economic, and environmental needs of Buckinghamshire
  • better quality places
  • more comprehensive and predictable delivery of all kinds of infrastructure

It brings benefits for people who live, work, or visit here, through:

  • making sure there are enough of the right homes and workplaces
  • getting the infrastructure in the right place at the right time
  • delivering better deals from developers on the obligations arising from their proposals

It brings efficiencies for us through:

  • making prompt planning decisions
  • fewer planning appeals and so lower costs

Local Plan work already underway

We are at the beginning of the plan-making process. In August 2020, the government consulted on a Planning White Paper that proposed significant reforms to the planning system.

In May 2022, the government published the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill. It takes many of these proposed changes forward but there is still more detail to come.

There is a limit to how much progress we can make until the government has confirmed the detail and timetable for the proposed changes. However, the early engagement questionnaire and our call for sites will give us a good foundation for progress.

Questionnaire survey

We asked residents to complete a questionnaire survey to start early discussions and find out the issues which local residents and organisations think are important in shaping the future of the area.

The survey ended on 11 February 2022. View details of the survey and how we involved residents in the Statement of Consultation [PDF, 774 KB]

Call for sites of previously developed land (brownfield)

We've carried out 2 calls for sites and as of 31 May 2022 we've received over 300 site submissions.

To find out more see Brownfield sites in Buckinghamshire.

Local Development Scheme

The Local Development Scheme (LDS) sets out the key planning policy documents that we will work on up to 2024 and the timetable for their completion.

Statement of Community Involvement

The Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) is a document that we must produce and keep up to date to ensure effective community involvement at all stages in the planning process. It sets out how anyone who lives, works, plays and carries out business in the Buckinghamshire Council area can be involved in local planning decisions and the preparation of planning documents.

We adopted the Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) on 7 December 2021.

Further documents

In addition to the Local Plan, we're preparing a range of Supplementary Planning Documents (SPDs). These SPDs add guidance for interpreting and implementing the policies included in the legacy district council Local Plans.