The Local Plan – what happens next?

Our 12-week consultation on the latest draft of the Local Plan, under what is known as Regulation 18, closed last week – a huge thank you to everyone that took part.

Thank you, too, to everyone that attended the events we organised to talk about the draft, answer questions and listen to people’s views. 

Understandably, many of you are asking what happens next and when. 

With representations from more than 4,000 individuals and organisations, sometimes representing hundreds of others, it is going to take us some time to analyse your feedback in detail. 

We need to consider the points that have been raised and decide what action needs to be taken under the guidance of a cross-party councillor working group.  

This is where elected councillors come together to consider the evidence, including consultation feedback, and scrutinise the recommendations of council officers. Their views will be reported to those within the council making the final decisions – in our case Cabinet then Full Council, which includes all councillors. See below. 

Your views from this consultation, and those contained in the previous consultations, will all be shared with the government-appointed Planning Inspector who will have the ultimate say on the draft plan and whether it is legally compliant and sound. 

As set out in what is known as the Local Development Scheme which we have published here – Local Development Scheme – March 2024 ( – we are aiming to seek approval of the final draft and its submission to the Planning Inspectorate from councillors – Cabinet then Full Council – early in the new year. 

This is when we will publish the results of the consultation. 

At this point, we will carry out the fifth consultation on the draft before its examination under what is known as Regulation 19. 

This is a much more limited exercise lasting six weeks and asks for people’s views on whether the plan is ‘sound’ and ‘legal’. 

At the Regulation 19 stage the focus is on whether all of the necessary evidence is there, whether the plan meets national policy requirements and whether we have prepared the plan in line with the legal tests.  

The feedback from this goes straight to the Planning Inspector. 

We aim to submit the final draft, the consultation feedback and all of the necessary paperwork by the government deadline of 30 June 2025. 

The next stage after that will be an ‘examination in public’ of the plan presided over by the Planning Inspector who looks at the evidence, listens to people’s views and has the final say over housing numbers and what land is included in the plan for development. 

You can find out more here – Local Plans: the examination process – GOV.UK ( 

We will publicise the details such as the procedure, dates and venues as soon as we know them. 

Below is an indicative summary of the timetable: 

Stage in the Local Plan process Timetable 
Regulation 18 consultation closes 3 June 2024 
Analysis and consideration of consultation feedback, changes to the draft plan considered by the cross-party councillor working group June 2024 to December 2024 
Canterbury City Council’s Cabinet and then Full Council to consider approval of revised draft plan for Regulation 19 consultation and submission to planning inspector Expected January 2025 
Regulation 19 consultation (six weeks) Expected February/March 2025 
Submission to Planning Inspectorate  Expected by 30 June 2025 
Examination in Public Expected to begin Autumn 2025 

Published: 14 June 2024

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