Consultation document

A new Local Plan - aiming for 'good' growth in our borough

What is a Local Plan?

We are preparing a new Local Plan which will decide how the communities and places of Elmbridge will develop over the next 15 years. It will allocate land for development and guide decisions on whether or not planning applications should be granted permission.

Like the rest of Surrey and the South East accommodating new growth and development is challenging. A new Local Plan will enable us to carefully plan for and proactively manage this to achieve 'good' growth, that benefits residents and builds on the prosperity of the borough.

Our current plan is from 2011 and it has been successful in delivering sustainable development. However, an up-to-date plan that meets the Government's requirements is essential to ensure that planning decisions, sustainable new development and regeneration takes place for the benefit of our borough and our residents now and in the future.

About this consultation

This document is one of three consultations with our residents, businesses and other stakeholders during the early stages of the plan preparation on what our new Local Plan should contain, the key issues it should address and the different approaches for doing so.

The role of these early consultations has been to consider what type of place we all want the borough to be over the next 15 years. Informed by feedback from earlier consultations and our technical work, this document outlines our thoughts on what should be the key aims and objectives and what we want our new Local Plan to deliver.


A family and a house made of paper in a field of grass


The first consultation (the Strategic Options consultation) undertaken in 2016 introduced the need to produce a new Local Plan and discussed where new homes could be located as well as possible approaches to other important issues that the Local Plan must address. The last consultation (the Options consultation) in September 2019 focussed on the issue of housing again and set out five different approaches as to where new homes could be located in the future. We now want to discuss the other important issues the Local Plan must address such as employment, our town and local centres and our approach to tackling climate change, as well as how we should protect and enhance the environment and our heritage assets, as it has been a while since this has been discussed with our residents and stakeholders.

We also want to share with you our thoughts on what approaches could be included in the detailed, day-to-day policies, referred to as the 'Development Management' policies which will need to be included in the plan.

Your responses, in conjunction with the previous consultations will help us to identify a shared vision for Elmbridge and the key objectives for the new Local Plan as well as help to shape the direction of the policies including the detailed Development Management (DM) policies. We will then ask for your views on a draft plan later in 2020.

More information on how the plan preparation has been undertaken to date and how your previous comments have been considered at the previous stages can be found in the Useful Summary: Plan preparation to date.


A sunset over a field


Structure of this document

This document starts with some background information on how the Local Plan is made and how it relates to other local and county-level strategies and action plans. It then identifies the key challenges and opportunities that we think the Local Plan should respond to and what it should be aiming to deliver. We think these should form the basis of our vison for Elmbridge in 2036 and the objectives for the plan.

As the topics are wide ranging, they have been split into three key themes; 'our natural environment', 'growing a prosperous economy' and 'ensuring health and wellbeing for all'. Under each theme we have set out our views on what policies we should consider including in our plan. There are questions for you to answer throughout the document and we would very much like to hear your views.

More background information on each theme is available in our 'theme overview papers' on our website. All technical documents and supporting documents can be found on our website at