Sevenoaks District Local Plan Proposed Submission Version Regulation 19 Consultation (including Appendices 1-4)

Executive Summary

Our Plan is split into ten chapters which cover all aspects of development and conservation.

The key messages from each of the chapters are set out below to give an overview of what this Plan aims to achieve:

1. Finding Places for New Homes

The government has identified a need of 698 homes each year in Sevenoaks, which is rolled forward over the 20 year period of the Local Plan. National planning guidance requires the Council to find suitable sites to meet this need. Maximum use will be made of sites within existing settlements and on previously developed land. Green Belt land will only be released where there are “Exceptional Circumstances” for doing so.

2. Homes to suit all incomes

With the District’s growing population, it is important to provide housing choices for all. This is a once in a generation opportunity to deliver affordable housing for first-time buyers, young families and older people. We also need to make sure new housing is near towns and villages to reduce loneliness and isolation. 

3. Creating Local Jobs and Better Town Centres

Economic growth and the creation of new and exciting job opportunities are key priorities. We want to support a range of leisure and recreational facilities to create a vibrant town centre, as well as looking after existing businesses. 

4. Improving Health, Schools and Transport

The protection of health, transport and education facilities is a key priority. Policies in the Local Plan seek to reduce traffic congestion and protect our existing public transport services. We will also ensure that any new housing has up to date technology. 

5. Protecting our Countryside

Sevenoaks District is 93% Green Belt and 60% AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). The Local Plan restricts development within the Green Belt in accordance with national guidelines to protect open land, prevent urban sprawl and stop built up areas from merging together. We need to make sure that any new development respects our unique landscapes.

6. Looking after our Wildlife

A number of policies in the Local Plan seek to protect the natural environment. It is important to minimise negative impacts on internationally important sites – such as Ashdown Forest. We also need to create new spaces for nature and wildlife. 

 7. Designing and protecting attractive places

It is important that all design across the District is high quality and low carbon. We aim to set up a Design Review Panel to aid new planning applications. We also need to ensure that heritage assets are protected to maintain local character.  

8. The Historic Environment

The historic environment is a valuable asset in this District and the Local Plan aims to conserve and enhance our Heritage Assets

9. Clean air, healthy living and preparing for a changing climate

As part of the Local Plan we will be promoting different transport options to improve air quality and health. We will be seeking to improve health and well-being through medical, social, community and recreational opportunities. We will also ensure new development is designed to be resilient against the changing climate. 

10. Improving opportunities to relax and have fun

The Local Plan aims to improve the quality of the District’s existing leisure facilities. It is important to protect open spaces that provide value to the local community. All new children’s play space should be of high quality and include attractive and engaging equipment. 


Sevenoaks District's Position within the Metropolitan Green Belt

Sevenoaks District's Sub-regional Setting and Relationships