The Council has prepared the following supporting evidence base to inform the Local Plan – draft (Regulation 18) Version. This will be subject to further review and refresh as the Plan progresses. For further information on the Regulation 18 Local Plan consultation visit the draft Local Plan webpage.

The HELAA will assess the development potential of sites for housing and economic land (including renewable energy schemes) across the district and consider whether they are suitable, available and achievable for development. Further information on the HELAA can be found on the HELAA webpage.

Includes the parishes of Crowhurst, Fairlight, Guestling, Icklesham (west), Pett and Westfield

Includes the parishes of Ashburnham, Battle, Brightling, Catsfield, Dallington, Mountfield, Sedlescombe and Whatlington

Includes the parishes of Beckley, Brede, Camber, East Guldeford, Icklesham (east), Iden, Northiam, Peasmarsh, Playden, Rye Foreign, Rye and Udimore

Includes the parishes of Bodiam, Burwash, Etchingham, Ewhurst, Hurst Green, Salehurst and Robertsbridge and Ticehurst

In support of preparing the policies for the new Local Plan, the Council have produced several thematic background papers which cover the current relevant policy context, existing evidence and guidance documents, a series of policy options, and a recommendations table for the preferred policy option.

The Density Study contains the evidence used to calculate housing density ranges and how these will apply to Rother’s different area types, as proposed by Policy LWL1: Compact Development. The information used to establish density and net site area is based upon national guidance and best practice and form an assessment of local developments.

The Council undertook targeted engagement at an early stage in the production of the local plan, in advance of the public consultation.

In order to the support the Council’s new Local Plan, we have worked alongside all of the East Sussex local authorities, and the South Downs National Park Authority to commission a joint Gypsy, Traveller and Travelling Showpeople Accommodation Needs Assessment for the study period between 2021 and 2040. This study provides a summary of accommodation need for Gypsies, Travellers and Travelling Showpeople in respect of both their permanent and transit needs for pitches/plots over the study period.

In addition, to identify additional sites for Gypsies and Travellers to meet the need set out in the Accommodation Assessment, we are carrying out a “Call for Sites”. We have published an interim report on potential sites identified to date, although site assessments have not yet been completed.

The purpose of the assessment is to understand the impact of the Council’s activities on people from protected and socio-economic disadvantaged groups and to assess whether unlawful discrimination may occur. It also helps identify key equality issues and highlight opportunities to promote equality across the Council and the community.

The HRA is a document that assesses whether the Local Plan may result in likely significant effects on the integrity of designated Habitats Sites.

This joint strategy for Hastings and Rother was produced in line with Sport England’s latest guidance and is the follow-on document to the Rother and Hastings Playing Pitch Strategy 2016 and the Leisure Facilities Strategy 2009-2020. 

The HEDNA (2024) has been prepared jointly with Hastings Borough Council. Its purpose is to assess future development needs up to 2040 for housing (both market and affordable) and employment across the Hastings and Rother area, to inform the preparation of the two Authorities’ emerging Local Plans. The document does not set the housing target for local authorities but provides the evidence to inform its starting position. The HEDNA has been produced in line with national Planning Practice Guidance.

A HEDNA was previously prepared for the two Councils in 2020. It has been necessary to produce an update to the 2020 HEDNA to ensure that each authority has the most up-to-date evidence available to inform the housing and employment policies of their emerging Local Plans, in particular taking account of the recent effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and changes to Government policy and guidance since the previous HEDNA (2020) was published. For reference, the HEDNA (2020) is available here.

The Infrastructure Delivery Plan (IDP) has been developed as part of the Rother District Local Plan (2020-2040). It identifies and details the strategic infrastructure provision which will support the objectives of and the development proposed within the Local Plan.

The Council, in collaboration with key transport stakeholders including East Sussex County Council and National Highways, has had a Shared Transport Evidence Base (STEB) produced which sets out an Interim Assessment on potential transport impacts of future growth.

In addition to this, the Council has had produced a feasibility study for a potential West Bexhill multi-modal corridor and low carbon growth area.

Rother District Council (RDC) declared a Climate Emergency in 2019. The new Local Plan will contribute to the council’s ambition for Rother to be net zero across the district by 2030. The Net Zero Carbon Evidence Base Report sets out an assessment of the causes, effects, and future projections of sectoral carbon emissions which the Local Plan will need to address in order to achieve a sustainable and resilient future for Rother residents.  

Achieving significant carbon reductions in Rother will require coordination between not just how buildings are developed (as directed by planning policy) but where they are located and how they are grouped, as determined through local plan site allocations and growth scenarios. The key recommendations of this report address both aspects. 

The Retail & Town Centre Uses Study updates the Council’s evidence base and recommendations that will inform policy directions for the new Local Plan. This evidence document sets out the need for retail and leisure throughout the District over the plan period, and considers any possible allocations or locations required to meet these needs. The study also identifies areas to be designated as Town and District Centres, as well as Primary Shopping Areas. Finally, the Study provides the evidence base for setting floorspace requirements above which Retail and Leisure Impact Assessments area required.

The Rother Retail & Town Centre Uses Study forms Volume A of the Study, while Volumes B – E constitute the appendices of the Study. Volume E maps the recommended Town Centre and Primary Shopping areas in comparison with the existing boundaries.

Volume B – Assessment Appendices (Available upon request)

Volume D – Household Survey (Available upon request)

The Settlement Study reviews the district’s existing designation of settlements by assessing the function, sustainability and physical constraints of built-up areas across the district. This is important to support the Council in demonstrating that it has explored all opportunities to meet the significantly increased Local Housing Need figure set by government, through the new Local Plan.

Settlement Study Appendices – Available upon request

The Rother District Level 1 Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (2021) provides information on all sources of flood risk in Rother District. However, at present the report has yet to consider potential locations for development in Rother going forward to inform the new Local Plan (up to 2040). This will be undertaken in due course and provided as an addendum to the SFRA when it is available. At this point it will also be determined whether a Level 2 Assessment is necessary.

For more information, please see the Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA) 2021 webpage.

Rother District Council worked jointly with Hastings Borough Council to prepare joint SA/SEA Scoping Report for the respective Local Plans. This document presents the SA framework which will be used to assess the development of policy options as the Local Plan progresses.

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