NORTHUMBERLAND councillors will be given the option to abandon the process of creating a new local plan, to reinstate the old one.

When the Conservative administration took power at County Hall last May, one of its first moves was to withdraw the local plan core strategy – a key document outlining development in the county.

Public consultation has now taken place on the first draft of the new plan, but it will not be fully in place until March 2020.

The Conservatives said there were fundamental issues with the previous strategy, including that housing numbers were too high and not based on the latest evidence.

But Labour, which previously led the council and is now in opposition, has consistently raised concerns about the withdrawal, claiming it has exposed the local authority to a number of risks.

In July, Labour leader Coun. Grant Davey tabled a motion calling for the council to drop the new local plan in favour of the withdrawn one, based on claims that the withdrawal decision was made without the right information.

However, while Coun. Davey’s motion was withdrawn following behind-closed-doors legal advice at that meeting, he has since tried to get his proposal put to the vote at subsequent meetings. The council has now confirmed that the motion will be on the agenda for the full council meeting on January 9.