Our role in Planning
Each of the Planning Authorities operating within the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) prepare Local Plans to help guide development across their administrative areas, including within the AONB.
As well as commenting on Local Plans, the team also comments on Waste and Mineral Plans, Supplementary Planning Documents and Neighbourhood Plans.
The AONB team comment on these various documents, on behalf of the AONB Partnership, to ensure that the conservation and enhancement of the area’s Natural Beauty is properly considered at the plan making stage.
The AONB team also comment on individual planning applications which have the potential to impact on the Suffolk Coast & Heaths AONB
Applications that frequently draw comments from the AONB team include:
- Those of sufficient scale, e.g. of a footprint and/or height that could detract from the landscape qualities of the area.
- Those that could significantly reduce the tranquillity of the area, through increased levels of noise and light.
- Those that could lead to a notable increase in disturbance, e.g. an increased number of visitors.
- Those that could lead to a change in landscape character, urbanisation of the countryside or an inappropriate change of use.
- Those that relate to changes to public rights of way or areas of public access.
- Those that seek to establish a precedent, move away from Development Plan policy or exception sites.
The AONB team’s comments are focused principally on the impact of planning applications or new policies on the components of natural beauty or special qualities as set out in the AONB Management Plan, and not on wider planning issues.
The AONB team have produced a Position Statement on Planning Consultations which clarifies the type of applications that the team would like to be consulted on.