A PLANNING document which will shape the future of Northumberland was approved this week.

Northumberland County Council agreed the Northumberland Local Plan up to 2036 at Wednesday's council meeting, the plan aimed at promoting economic growth and the expansion of choice in the housing market.

The draft proposal was agreed by councillors and it will face public scrutiny before being submitted to the government for final approval.

The plan sets out strategic planning policies and planning principles for the whole county, the general scale and distribution of new development, and the detail of where new homes, workplaces and facilities will be located. 
It is hoped it will support the delivery of additional, better paid and higher skilled jobs in the county, and provide homes to meet extra housing demand.

Bellingham councillor, John Riddle, cabinet member for planning and housing at Northumberland County Council, said:  “This new plan shows our ambitions for the future economic prosperity of Northumberland. 
“It will deliver additional, better paid and higher skilled jobs in the county.  We plan to build on existing strengths while also diversifying and realising the potential of the rural and visitor economies.

“The plan will deliver a growing and thriving county in line with not only our aspirations as a council and national planning policy, but also with the ambitions of the North of Tyne Combined Authority, the North East Local Enterprise Partnership and the Borderlands Initiative.
“We are committed to ensuring that everyone with an interest in this plan has the opportunity to have their say and help shape the future of the county and this final phase of public engagement will provide an opportunity for people to review the final details and tell us about its soundness.”

Now that it has been approved by full council, the Northumberland Local Plan will be open for a six week consultation period to run between Wednesday, January 30, and Wednesday, March 13.
The council will run public drop-in events throughout Northumberland and the plan will also be available in local libraries and information centres.

More details can be found at www.northumberland.gov.uk/localplan.