Development Management Development Plan (DPD)

Ended on the 9 August 2010
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Section 3: Development Management Policy Context

National Policy

At a national level, the Government sets out planning policies and principles within Planning Policy Guidance (PPGs), which are currently being rewritten and replaced by Planning Policy Statements (PPSs). The full list of PPGs and PPSs and their development management policies are set out in Appendix 1 and 2 and are available on the Community and Local Government (CLG) website at

National guidance and policy, including relevant annexes, are material considerations and can be used to determine decisions on individual planning applications. In many cases national and regional policy and the Core Strategy provide comprehensive policy coverage of an issue. This means that not every circumstance and type of development will need to be included within the development management policies.

In May 2010, there was a change of Government that set out in the Queen’s Speech, an intention to amend the planning system. The future production stages of the Development Management DPD will take account of any relevant future changes to the planning system at the time of publication.

Regional Policy

All development proposals will be subject to the policies contained within the East of England Plan (2008) which provides the regional spatial strategy for the region. The East of England Plan forms part of the development plan for Southend-on-Sea, along with the Local Development Framework. Therefore both the RSS and LDF will be used to determine planning applications.

The most relevant East of England Plan policies to each issue identified in this Development Management Issues and Options document are listed within the supporting text. A comprehensive list of all the East of England Plan policies is provided in Appendix 3.

Local Context

Southend-on-Sea Sustainable Community Strategy 2007 – 2017

The Southend-on-Sea Local Strategic Partnership ‘Southend Together’ produced a Community Strategy for the period 2007 to 2017 which sets out a long term strategy for delivering the vision for Southend. The Community Strategy 2007 – 2017 sets out the following ambitions to be achieved by 2017:

  • To be a borough that has a safer, more accessible, and affordable means of getting about, which supports the potential for regeneration and growth;
  • To provide visionary leadership and enable inclusive, active and effective participation by individuals and organisations;
  • To create a safer community for all;
  • To be recognised as the cultural capital of the East of England;
  • To create a thriving and sustainable local economy, which extends opportunity for local residents and promotes prosperity throughout the borough;
  • To continue improving outcomes for all children and young people;
  • To protect the borough for current and future generations and to remain an attractive place for residents, businesses and visitors;
  • To provide opportunities, support and information to people of all ages and abilities to enable them to take responsibility for their health and choose a healthy lifestyle;
  • To be a borough with decent housing, in safe and attractive residential areas that meet the needs of those who want to live here.

Southend’s Local Area Agreement 2008 – 2011 – Quality of Life for Life

The Local Area Agreement (LAA) is a short term action plan to deliver Southend-on-Sea’s Sustainable Community Strategy. The LAA sets out the local priorities which aim to make Southend-on-Sea a better place in which to live, work and enjoy. The main aim of the LAA is to achieve local solutions that meet local needs while also contributing to national priorities set by Government.

To effectively align the LAA with the Sustainable Community Strategy and to provide a delivery plan, the LAA has set seven key priorities. These are as follows:

  • Strengthening the local economy;
  • Raising aspirations and achievements;
  • Making a safer place to live;
  • Leading a cohesive community;
  • Tackling health inequalities;
  • Safeguarding a high quality, sustainable environment; and
  • Revitalising Southend-on-Sea’s image.

The Corporate Plan 2010 - 2013

The Corporate Plan ensures that the Council’s aims and priorities are focused on delivering the vision for the community and the aspirations set out in the Sustainable Community Strategy and Local Area Agreement (LAA).

The Plan has a number of Corporate Priorities and Cross Cutting Priorities which will help deliver the aims and vision. These are:




Continue to reduce crime, disorder and anti-social behaviour

Create a well-maintained and attractive street scene, parks and open spaces


Minimise our impact on the natural environment


Continue to improve outcomes for vulnerable adults and older people

Make Southend active and alive with sport and culture


Continue to improve outcomes for vulnerable children

Enhance the prosperity of Southend and its residents

Enable well-planned quality housing and developments that meet the needs and expectations of Southend’s residents and businesses

Reduce the inequalities gap and increase the life chances of people living in Southend


Become a higher performing organisation

Southend-on-Sea Local Development Framework

The Core Strategy DPD, adopted 2007, is the overarching document within the Southend-on-Sea LDF. It sets out the strategic spatial planning framework for the borough through its vision, strategic objectives and policies, including the scale and distribution of key types of development such as housing, employment and infrastructure. The role of this Development Management DPD is to assist delivery of the spatial planning framework by providing greater detail as to how development and investment proposals will be managed ‘on the ground’. As such the Development Management Policies must conform to the Core Strategy DPD and both documents together with other relevant DPDs and Supplementary Planning Documents1 (SPDs) will be used to determine planning applications.

The aim of the Core Strategy is to secure a major refocus of function and the long term sustainability of Southend-on-Sea as a significant urban area which serves local people and the Thames Gateway. To do this there is a need to release the potential of Southend-on-Sea’s land and buildings to achieve measurable improvements in the town’s economic prosperity, transportation networks, infrastructure and facilities; and the quality of life of all its citizens. This will include safeguarding and improving the standards of the town’s amenities and improving the quality of the natural and built environment. For information and ease of reference, the Vision and Strategic Objectives for the Core Strategy DPD are set out below.

Strategic Objectives

SO1 Deliver employment led regeneration, wealth creation and growth across Essex Thames Gateway sub-region.
SO2 Secure the regeneration of Southend as a cultural and intellectual hub and a centre of education excellence.
SO3 Create and maintain a balance between employment and housing growth in the future.
SO4 Secure sustainable regeneration and growth focused on the urban area.
SO5 Provide for not less than 13,000 net additional jobs in the period 2001 to 2021 within Southend.
SO6 Provide for 6,500 net additional dwellings in the period 2001 to 2021 within Southend.
SO7 Target future dwelling provision to meet the needs of local people including the provision of affordable housing.
SO8 Secure a thriving, vibrant and attractive town centre and network of district and local centres.
SO9 Secure a ‘step change’ in the provision of transport infrastructure as an essential concomitant to new development.
SO10 Maximise the effectiveness and integration of key transport corridors and interchanges as a principal focus for development in the urban area.
SO11 Secure the regeneration of London Southend Airport to enable it to reach its potential to function as a local regional airport providing for significant new employment opportunities and improved surface access subject to environmental safeguards.
SO12 Secure the sustainable use of the River Thames and its Estuary as an asset for transport, leisure and business.
SO13 Secure the social and physical infrastructure related to improving the health, education, lifelong learning and well-being of all sectors of the community.
SO14 Deliver high quality, well designed and attractive urban and natural environments which are safe, people friendly and distinctive, and which respect and enhance existing character and local amenity.
SO15 Secure effective and efficient sustainable development which prevents or minimises local contributions to, and the impact of, climate change, flood risk and the depletion of non-renewable resources, including the application of sustainable construction and operation in all development through the prudent use of natural resources, energy efficiency and low carbon emissions, and the maximum use of renewable and recycled resources.
SO17 Regenerate and bring back into productive and beneficial long-term use, including where appropriate use for biodiversity or other natural resource value, land which is contaminated or otherwise degraded.
SO18 Contribute to the creation of a ‘Green Grid’ of high quality, linked and publicly accessible open spaces and landscapes across the sub-region.
SO19 Secure delivery of strategic objectives through all relevant delivery bodies and their strategies.

Local Transport Plan

The local implementation plan and framework for transport infrastructure is presented in the Southend-on-Sea Local Transport Plan (LTP2) 2006 to 2011. Work has begun on the third LTP and the outcome will inform the submission version of the Development Management DPD.

LTP2 recognises the need and requirement for high quality, well designed and accessible transport infrastructure and its contribution towards creating an improved travel environment and aiding the delivery of an urban renaissance.

Renaissance Southend Ltd

As part of the Government's Sustainable Communities Agenda, a number of Urban Regeneration Companies (URC's) have been established for key towns and cities to promote and deliver regeneration and growth. A URC for Southend, 'Renaissance Southend Limited', was established in 2005.

The URC has produced a 'Framework Document' for the whole borough to guide its work. Initially the URC has focused its attention on particular areas of the borough to deliver real change. This includes the Town Centre and the Central Seafront Area for which masterplans have been prepared. As part of the preparation process of the Masterplan, separate consultations have been undertaken to gain the views of key stakeholders and other interested parties. Details of this work can be viewed on the URC's web site at

Other Material Considerations

Crime and Disorder Act 1998 / Police Reform Act 2002

Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 and subsequent amendments in the Police Reform Act 2002 state that the Council will do all it reasonably can to reduce and prevent further crime and disorder in its area. The Council has therefore prepared the Southend-on-Sea Crime, Disorder and Drugs Strategy and will, through the Southend Crime and Disorder Partnership, seek to combat the problems of crime and disorder through the implementation of strategic priorities and measured by the annual assessment of identified action points.


Safeguarding, protecting and enhancing nature and conservation sites of International, national and local importance is a priority for the Council. The area of the estuary bounding the Seafront contains a number of these sites, whose designations include Ramsar (wetlands), SSSI (Sites of Specific Interest), SPA (rare or vulnerable species) and NNR (National Natural Reserve).

The Development Management Issues and Options

The following Sections set out for discussion and comment what the Council considers to be the main issues and options for development management policies. These are set out within the following key themes.

  • Design and Townscape;
  • The Seafront;
  • Housing;
  • Economic Development;
  • Environmental Management; and
  • Transport and Accessibility.

Also provided for comment is what the Council considers the best approach needed to deliver the Vision and Strategic Objectives of the Core Strategy effectively and how this can be achieved within each theme. This ‘suggested approach’ is followed by alternative approaches which the Council is also seeking views on. For example are they better or worse than the suggested approach.

Generic Questions

When reading through this Development Management Issues and Options consultation document please consider the issues and suggested options in respect to the following generic questions:

(22)1. Has the Council identified all the key development management issues that are relevant to Southend-on-Sea?
(1)2. Do you agree with the suggested policy options?
(5)3. Are there any other options that you think the Council should consider as well as the ones suggested within this consultation document?
(7)4. Do you think that the Council’s evidence base is sufficient to inform the Development Management DPD or do you consider that there is a need for further studies to inform this document?

1 Design and Townscape Guide SPD

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