New planning legislation introduces a right for communities to produce their own plans, known as Local Place Plans, providing the opportunity for communities to feed into the planning system with their own ideas and proposals for the development and use of land.
These community-led plans will set out the aspirations of people for the place they live in and suggest solutions, including to big challenges like the global climate emergency and tackling inequalities. By setting out priorities for future development in an area, Local Place Plans can also help communities to develop and deliver their own projects and bring about community-based change.
Once completed and then registered by the Council, a Local Place Plan will be considered by us in the preparation of the Local Development Plan.
Local Place Plans give communities a new way to have their ideas considered during the preparation of a Local Development Plan but are not part of the Development Plan. Proposals put forward in a Local Place Plan may be included in the Local Development Plan, but there may be other considerations which mean they are not. We will show why community proposals have or have not been included and there will be the opportunity for this to be independently assessed.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are Local Place Plans?
Local Place Plans are community-led plans setting out proposals for the development and use of land.
Examples of the issues that Local Place Plans might cover include:
- proposals for new homes, including affordable homes, local employment or community facilities
- proposals which support climate change mitigation and adaption, such as renewable energy, flood risk management and tree planting
- initiatives for active travel and community growing
- improvements to town, village and neighbourhood centres
- improvements to open space provision and quality, play and community facilities
- the conservation of local wildlife or built environment
A local place plan may also identify land and buildings that the community body considers to be of particular significance to the local area.
Who prepares a Local Place Plan?
Local Place Plans must be prepared by – or on behalf of – a Community Council or a ‘community-controlled body’, as defined by the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015. If you are unsure, we can help to advise what qualifies under these definitions. Preparing a Local Plan should be collaborative – involving as many people and organisations as possible with an interest in a place – and community-led.
How do you prepare a Local Place Plan?
The Planning Act and Local Place Plan Regulations require certain steps to be taken in preparing a Local Place Plan. These are summarised in the Circular and include setting out any reasons for considering that the Local Development Plan should be amended and a statement on the consultation carried out on the Local Place Plan.
The Scottish Government has also published a Draft How to Guide for Local Place Plans. The guide is split into four sections (outlined below) and is designed to help communities decide whether a Local Place Plan is the right thing for them and how to go about preparing one.
Local Place Plan Preparation Guide
- Getting ready (minimum 6 months)
- Developing your plan (6-12 months or more)
- Presenting your plan (a few weeks)
- Delivering your plan (weeks/months/years!)
What area should a Local Place Plan cover?
There is no prescription as to the area covered by a Local Place Plan. It is up to the community to define this. It is expected that Local Place Plans could be prepared for a locality, town, community council area or a neighbourhood within a town.
Does a community need to do a Local Place Plan?
There will be many other opportunities for individuals and communities to have their say and input into the preparation of the Local Development Plan. We are happy to discuss the best way for your community body to be involved in the process.
We will also take into account other plans such as Local Island Plans and Local Place Frameworks (currently being prepared for Largs, Saltcoats and Kilwinning) that cover the same themes as a Local Place Plan.
When would a Local Place Plan need to be submitted?
In line with our current timetable for producing the next Local Development Plan (LDP3), which is set out in the latest Development Plan Scheme, we anticipate setting a deadline for the submission of Local Place Plans of 30 June 2024. This will allow us to review, register and take account of Local Place Plans in the preparation of the Local Development Plan.
Invitation to create Local Place Plans
In early 2023, we will issue an invitation to communities to prepare a Local Place Plan. The invitation will set out the date by which Local Place Plans should be submitted to North Ayrshire Council if they are to be considered in the preparation of the Local Development Plan 3 and information on the support available. Community bodies, however, do not need to wait for the invitation to get started on their local place plans.
- Planning circular 1/2022: Local Place Plans – Scottish Government guidance on the preparation, submission and registration of Local Place Plans. The circular is useful in interpreting the legislation and regulations relating to local place plans.
- The Planning (Scotland) Act 2019
- The Town and Country Planning (Local Place Plans) Scotland Regulations 2022
- Local Place Plans Draft ‘How to’ Guide – The Scottish Community Development Centre and Nick Wright Planning developed a ‘How to’ Guide aimed at supporting communities to prepare Local Place Plans. Please note, this draft guide pre-dates the Local Place Plan Regulations and Guidance. Updated guidance is expected to be published soon.
- Our Place – Local Place Plans – The Our Place website has been developed by the Scottish Government and partner organisations to support collaborative place-based working across Scotland. The website includes a range of information relevant to Local Place Plans, place-making principles and approaches.
- PAS is a charity which helps people and communities shape the future of their place and engage with the planning system in an open and inclusive way. They can provide advice, training and support, including for community organisations to develop and deliver their own aspirations for place through local place plans and other community-led plans.
If you are a Community Council or community body interested in preparing a Local Place Plan, or you have any questions about Local Place Plans, please get in touch: