Oxford Local Plan 2016-2036 Examination

To find out how the Council intends to publicise the final inspectors report, and also inform you of the adoption of the Oxford Local Plan 2036 during the restrictions associated with the current Covid-19 pandemic, please see the Oxford Local Plan 2036 page. 

Latest News 

Publication of Inspectors’ Report

Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 (as amended) and the Town and Country Planning (Local Plans) (England) Regulations 2012

On March 22nd 2019 Oxford City Council submitted the Oxford Local Plan 2036 to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government along with an accompanying letter. The Secretary of State appointed the Planning Inspectorate (an agency of the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government) to review and examine Oxford’s Local Plan. The Planning Inspectorate then assigned two Inspectors, Jonathan Bore MRTPI and Nick Fagan MRTPI to carry out a review and examination of the Local Plan. The Oxford Local Plan 2036 public hearings took place in December 2019. Most recently, the Main Modifications consultation took place in late February - March 2020.

Notice is hereby given in accordance with section 20 (8) of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 and regulation 25 (1) (a) of the Town and Country Planning (Local Planning) (England) Regulations 2012 that on 15th May 2020 Oxford City Council received the Inspectors’ Report.

The Inspectors concluded that with the recommended main modifications set out in the Appendix to their report, the Local Plan satisfies the requirements of Section 20(5) of the 2004 Act and meets the criteria for soundness in the National Planning Policy Framework.

The Inspectors’ Report into the Local Plan is available to view online.

What happens next?

The City Council will hold a Cabinet meeting on the 8th June 2020 to consider the contents of the Inspectors’ report and then make a decision on whether to formally adopt the Plan at full Council, also on the 8th June. The Oxford Local Plan together with some existing documents will then form the Development Plan. The policies within the Plan will then be used by the City Council to determine planning applications for the future development of Oxford up to 2036.

Correspondence between Oxford City Council and the Inspectors

Correspondence exchanged between the Inspectors and the City Council surrounding the Inspectors' initial questions and comments can be found in the Inspectors Correspondence folder of the examination library. The Inspectors' Report and the Schedule of Main Modifications can be found below: 

Latest Documents 

The latest documents can be found in the following folder: 

The Inspectors

Planning Inspectors Jonathan Bore MRTPI and Nick Fagan BSc(Hons) DipTP MRTPI were appointed to undertake an independent examination into the soundness of the Oxford City Local Plan (the Plan).

The Inspectors’ task is to consider the soundness of the submitted Plan, based on the criteria set out in paragraph 35 of the National Planning Policy Framework 2019 (the Framework).  The relevant soundness criteria are whether the Plan is:

  1. Positively prepared (providing a strategy which, as a minimum, seeks to meet the area’s objectively assessed needs; and is informed by agreements with other authorities, so that unmet need from neighbouring areas is accommodated where it is practical to do so and is consistent with achieving sustainable development);
  2. Justified (an appropriate strategy, taking into account the reasonable alternatives, and based on proportionate evidence);
  3. Effective (deliverable over the plan period and based on effective joint working on cross-boundary strategic matters that have been dealt with rather than deferred, as evidenced by the statement of common ground); and
  4. Consistent with national policy (enabling the delivery of sustainable development in accordance with the policies in the Framework). 

The Inspectors have taken into account the representations submitted upon the Proposed Submission Plan as far as they relate to soundness considerations. A number of informal debates took place on the principal matters identified by the Inspector in December 2019. These are termed Hearing Sessions.

The Inspectors concluded that with the recommended main modifications set out in the Appendix to their report, the Local Plan satisfies the requirements of Section 20(5) of the 2004 Act and meets the criteria for soundness in the National Planning Policy Framework.

Guidance Notes have been prepared by the Inspectors to help people understand the process. Any queries people may have regarding the Examination process should be directed to the Programme Officer who will be happy to assist.

The Programme Officer

The Programme Officer, Ian Kemp, will act as the contact for any person who has an interest in the Examination and as a liaison between the Inspectors, Council and Representors.

He is an independent Officer of the Examination and works on behalf of the Inspectors to organise and manage the administrative and procedural elements of the Examination process. All statements will also be submitted through him.

Any matters that anyone wishes to raise with the Inspector should be submitted via the Programme Officer.

Contact details

Ian Kemp, PO BOX 241, Droitwich, WR9 1DW

Mobile: 0772 300 9166

Email: [email protected]icloud.com

Hearing Sessions Venue and Timetable

Hearing Sessions concluded on 19th December 2019. The final agenda can be found in the Examination Library here

Written Statements 

The following written statements were received in response to the Inspectors’ Matters, Issues and Questions:

Evidence Base Documents

In preparing the Plan the Council both refer to and were informed by a number of documents that together form the 'Evidence Base' for the Examination.

Examination Documents 

Documents submitted during the course of the Examination can be accessed within section 20 of the Evidence Base Documents.