Supporting evidence for Emerging Local Plan

Norfolk Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessments

Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessments (HELAAs) are key evidence documents which support the preparation of Local Plans. Their purpose is to establish how much suitable development land there is in an area and to test if this land could be developed. They help local planning authorities to understand the level of growth they can plan for and the areas where growth can be accommodated. These assessments are not policy documents and they do not determine if land should be allocated for development or if planning permission should be granted.

As part of the duty to cooperate it is proposed to use a consistent methodology for producing HELAAs across all of the planning authorities in Norfolk.  As such the Norfolk HELAA methodology will apply to the following councils:

  • Breckland Council
  • Broadland District Council
  • Broads Authority
  • Great Yarmouth Borough Council
  • Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk
  • North Norfolk District Council
  • Norwich City Council
  • South Norfolk Council

The councils have jointly consulted on the approach they intend to take to the preparation of their own HELAAs. The proposed methodology is considered to have been prepared in accordance with national guidance, but proposes that HELAAs would use an alternative size threshold for sites in rural locations and would seek to capture all potentially suitable sites within the Broads Authority area, where development potential is significantly constrained.

The HELAA methodology consultation took place between March and May 2016 and was hosted by North Norfolk District Council who are responsible for collating all the responses received. The North Norfolk District Council website provides further information about the HELAA methodology consultation.

Strategic Housing Market Assessment

The Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA) for Central Norfolk was published in January 2016. Its purpose is to set out the Objectively Assessed Need (OAN) for housing in the local planning areas of Broadland, Breckland, North Norfolk, Norwich and South Norfolk together with the Broads Authority.

The SHMA was prepared by Opinion Research Services (ORS) and will be used by the commissioning authorities as a shared evidence base to inform the preparation of Local Plans.

Elements of the 2016 SHMA have been updated by a new SHMA published in June 2017, which provides a new OAN and new estimates for affordable housing need across the Central Norfolk area. The findings of the SHMA need to be taken into account alongside government's methodology for the calculation of Local Housing Need. 

The various SHMA documents are available to download here

Norfolk Strategic Planning Framework

The Norfolk Strategic Planning Framework (NSPF) is a non-statutory planning framework being produced by the Norfolk Strategic Planning Member Forum on behalf of all the local councils in Norfolk. The NSPF will provide the structure for tackling the wider planning issues across the county, such as the provision of key infrastructure and the delivery of development.

The NSPF will inform the preparation of the new Greater Norwich Local Plan and provide key evidence on a range of issues, including compliance with the duty to cooperate. Four main areas of work have been identified; housing, infrastructure, economic development and delivery.

The latest information on the NSPF, including minutes from the Member Forum, can be found on the Norfolk County Council website.

Gypsies and Travellers Local Plan

The council had previously been working on the preparation of a Gypsies and Travellers Local Plan. However, a revision to the Local Development Scheme was agreed by Cabinet in December 2017, and in this it was agreed that work on the Gypsies and Travellers Local Plan would not continue. Planning to meet the accommodation needs of Gypsies and Travellers is being progressed through the Greater Norwich Local Plan. As part of the evidence base for Gypsies and Travellers accommodation needs, a Caravans and Houseboats Needs Assessment (covering five Norfolk authorities, plus the Broads Authority) was commissioned and published in autumn 2017.



Broadland Place Shaping Team

Telephone: 01508 533805