Wirral Borough Council have issued the above document for consultation purposes. The main document can be see via this link (http://wirral-consult.limehouse.co.uk/portal) and the main introduction is copied below that gives an outline of what the document is about.

A Spatial Options Open Day is being held at Wallasey Town Hall on Friday 22nd January running from 10am to 8pm. There will be a short presentation every hour on the hour, Planning Officers will be in attendance all day to answer questions and all the documents will be available for inspection.


1 Introduction

1.1 This document forms the next stage in the preparation of a Core Strategy Development Plan Document for the Metropolitan Borough of Wirral to 2031. It is published for the purpose of public consultation.

What is a Core Strategy?

1.2 The Core Strategy is a long term planning document that will set the framework for future development and investment in Wirral over the next 20 years.

1.3 Once adopted, the Core Strategy will form part of the Local Development Framework for the Borough. The Local Development Framework and the Regional Spatial Strategy for the North West will form the statutory Development Plan for the Borough. The statutory Development Plan for the Borough is used as the basis for determining individual planning applications and for other decisions taken under the Planning Acts.


How is it Prepared?

1.4 A Core Strategy must be prepared in accordance with national procedures.

1.5 The Council began preparing a Core Strategy for Wirral in July 2005. Initial consultation began in March 2005 to identify the Borough’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats and local needs. The findings were then prioritised by a series of public workshops held in November 2006. Additional consultation with under-represented groups took place during summer 2007. Consultation on the issues, vision and objectives to be included in the Core Strategy took place in February 2009 following an extensive series of evidence gathering in 2008 and 2009. Reports of consultation are available for public inspection and the results have been used to inform the content of this document.

1.6 The emerging Core Strategy will be assessed, at each stage, against a series of local social, economic and environmental sustainability objectives – a process called sustainability appraisal. The scope of the sustainability appraisal for the Core Strategy was agreed, following public consultation, in July 2007.

1.7 The Core Strategy will also need to be subject to a separate assessment under the national Habitats Regulations to ensure that it will not have a significant impact on sites of international importance for nature conservation.

What is this Document About?

1.8 This document sets out what the Council believes are the main options that will need to be considered before deciding on the most appropriate long term spatial strategy for the Borough. The options follow a description of the Borough and the main groups of settlements within it, a vision of what the Borough may become in the future and a statement of the objectives that the Core Strategy will be seeking to implement.

1.9 Two sets of options are presented. The first set of options consider the overall pattern of future development across the Borough. The second set of options consider the range of responses that could be made to a number of other subjects, as required by national policy. The extent to which each option would fit with the vision and objectives for the Core Strategy is explained, alongside a summary of the findings of the accompanying sustainability appraisal and a brief statement of the Council’s conclusions so far.

1.10 A copy of the full sustainability appraisal, the results of the initial screening under the Habitat Regulations and an Equality and Diversity Impact Statement are available for public inspection alongside this document.

How Can You Comment?

1.11 You can comment on any aspect of this report or on the content of the accompanying supporting documents. A series of consultation questions have been included in this document to guide you to areas where we would especially like to hear your views.

1.12 Your comments must, however, be made in writing, by letter, e-mail or fax and arrive at the address below no later than 17.00 hours on Friday 5 March 2010.

1.13 It is more cost efficient for the Council if your comments can be made through the Council’s on-line consultation system. This will help us to keep you up-to-date on future progress. It is easy to register and you will be given your own user name and password at http://wirral-consult.limehouse.co.uk/portal

1.14 Please note that the Council will not be able to keep any of the comments you make private and that your name or organisation as well as your comments will need to be recorded in a published report of consultation.

1.15 Copies of this document have also been placed in public libraries and can be made available in alternative formats, on request.

What Will Happen Next?

1.16 The comments received will be used to help the Council decide on the Preferred Options for the Core Strategy which will then be used to influence the preparation of a full draft Plan.

1.17 The Council expects to consult on the Preferred Options, giving the reasons why they are preferred, in Spring 2010. A copy of a full draft Core Strategy will not be available until Summer 2010.

For further information please contact: Wirral Council, Strategic Development, Town Hall, Brighton Street, Wallasey, Wirral CH44 8ED – Telephone 0151 691 8206 – Fax 0151 691 8188 – email pamconway@wirral.gov.uk

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