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Examination by the Planning Inspector

The Examination process started in May 2012, when the Core Strategy and Development Management Policies document and supporting evidence were submitted by the Council to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.

The Core Document Library contains all the key documents that were used to draw up the Core Strategy.

The Planning Inspectorate appointed an Inspector, Mike Moore BA (Hons) MRTPI CMILT MCIHT, on behalf of the Secretary of State to take charge of the Examination. Follow this link to view all correspondence between the Council and the Inspector.

Examination hearings took place in October and November 2012. The Examination hearings pages have the statements and agendas for each of Matters considered.

The Council received confirmation from the Planning Inspectorate that the Inspector had found the Core Strategy to be 'sound' on 6 June 2013.

Examination timeline and key events

5 July 2013 - Council formally adopts Core Strategy as planning policy - an extraordinary meeting of Full Council held on Friday 5 July agreed to accept the Planning Inspector’s report and adopt of the Suffolk Coastal Core Strategy and Development Management Policies document as planning policy - view the agenda and reports for this meeting.

6 June 2013 - The Council has received official confirmation from the Planning Inspectorate that the Inspector has found the Core Strategy to be 'sound', subject to the modifications proposed and discussed during the Examination process:

20 May 2013 - Following the conclusion of the special Full Council meeting held today, the Council has written to the Inspector to confirm that it remains satisfied with its original decision in January 2013 regarding the overall housing number and progress of the Core Strategy:

2 May 2013 - The Council has responded to the Inspector's letter dated 16 April 2013:

16 April 2013 - The Inspector has asked the Council to respond to some of the comments made on the Sustainability Appraisal that accompanied the Main Modifications and for any comments on suggested minor variations to the wording of some modifications:

12 April 2013 - The Council has responded to the Inspector's letter dated 2 April 2013:

2 April 2013 - the Inspector has written to the Council referring to two letters from Suffolk County Council relating to the potential infrastructure requirements of development at 2 sites in Trimley St Mary and Trimley St Martin and asking for any comments the Council may have on any implications of these two letters for the Core Strategy, including whether they change any of the evidence already before the Examination and the conclusions that may be drawn from it:

21 February 2013 - the Council is consulting on proposed Modifications to the Core Strategy and accompanying Sustainability Appraisal from 21 February 2013 until 4.45pm on 5 April 2013:

18 February 2013 - The Council has written to the Inspector advising that formal consultation regarding the Core Strategy Main Modifications (and accompanying Sustainability Appraisal) will take place between Thursday 21 February 2013 and Friday 5 April 2013:

7 February 2013 - the Inspector has written to the Council asking for arrangements to be made for consultation to take place on the Main Modifications Issue 5, for a minimum period of 6 weeks, with any further comments confined solely to the modifications. The Inspector has also asked the Council to undertake appropriate consultation on the updated Sustainability Appraisal:

The Council will begin consultation as soon as practicably possible. Actual dates will be announced in due course.

4 February 2013 - the Council has updated the Main and Additional Modifications schedules and completed the sustainability appraisal on the Main Modifications and the reasonable alternative housing options referred to in the Inspector's letter dated 7 December 2012:

28 January 2013 - the Council has written to the Inspector setting out its response to the points raised in the RSS revocation submissions:

22 January 2013 - all submissions received on the implications of the East of England Plan revocation as it relates to the Suffolk Coastal Core Strategy have been published:

21 January 2013 - the Council has submitted its formal response to the Inspector's letter dated 17 December 2012 inviting comments on the implications of the revocation of the regional spatial strategy for the East of England (the East of England Plan), insofar as it relates to the Examination of the Suffolk Coastal Core Strategy:

7 January 2013 - The Inspector has asked the Programme Officer to make it clear that the content of the Council's press release 'Council's new planning blueprint nears approval?' and any opinions contained within it are not part of the Examination pages on the website. It does not form part of the evidence base for the Examination and the Inspector will not have regard to its content. Any queries relating to the article should therefore be addressed to the Council.

The correspondence between the Inspector and the Council on the way forward since the hearings closed is that on the Examination pages of the website. The Inspector will not reach a final view on the Core Strategy until he has considered the responses to consultations on the revocation of the regional strategy and on the Main Modifications.

17 December 2012 - The Government has laid an Order before Parliament to revoke the regional spatial strategy for the East of England (the East of England Plan), which will come into force on 3 January 2013. The Inspector has asked the Programme Officer to start a consultation on the matter as it relates to the Suffolk Coastal Core Strategy and has written to the Council and Core Strategy respondents asking for submissions by 21 January 2013:

7 December 2012 - The Inspector has written to the Council informing it of his decision to proceed with consultation on the Main Modifications as set out in Issue 4 of the Main Modifications document submitted by the Council on 5 December:

5 December 2012 - In response to the Programme Officer's email dated 4 December 2012, the Council has re-issued the Main Modifications and Additional Modifications schedules. The Council's covering letter deals with some errata found in the original schedules.

4 December 2012 - The Programme Officer has emailed the Council asking for the Main Modifications document to be resubmitted to the Inspector with the Modifications in numerical order:

30 November 2012 - Following the conclusion of the hearings, the Council has provided the Inspector with the remaining outstanding information and the proposed list of Main Modifications:

29 November 2012 - Following the Inspector's deadline of 23 November 2012 for people to comment on the Suffolk Coastal/NANT note on the implications of the Cogent judgment, all responses (including the Council's response to points raised) have been published on the Matter 1 hearing page.

20 November 2012 - Council's response to the clarification point requested by the Inspector for Matter 10 with regard to the Council's affordable housing policies following the introduction of Affordable Rent:

16 November 2012 - At the final hearing session (Thursday 15 November) the Inspector announced that until the Cogent submissions have been received from objectors (deadline Friday 23 November) and a response from the Council, he will be unable to confirm when his report is likely to be sent to the Council. There are a number of options he has to consider as a result of the hearing sessions, there may be additional modifications or indeed further works required to be undertaken by the Council. All of this will effect what happens next. The Inspector will write via the Programme Officer once a view has been taken. Please keep checking this web page for updates.

15 November 2012 - the hearing for Matter 10 - Affordable Housing due to be held on Thursday 15 November has been cancelled.

13 November 2012 - the Council has responded to the Inspector's letter dated 22 October 2012. The response provides further clarification on matters included within the Council's letter dated 10 October 2012 (PDF 145KB), and details of proposed modifications to Policy SP4, Paragraph 5.28 and Policy DM9. These modifications have been discussed with representatives of Ipswich Borough Council, as the other party who had made representations on Matter 11 - Travellers, who have provided verbal confirmation that the further changes are broadly acceptable.

13 November 2012 - Agendas have been published for the hearings taking place on 14 & 15 November:

5 November 2012 - Agendas have been published for the hearings taking place on 6 & 7 November:

22 October 2012 - The Inspector has cancelled the hearing session on Matter 11 scheduled for 15 November as this matter can be dealt with by Ipswich Borough Council and the Council through written representations and no other parties are seeking to be heard. The Inspector has also raised further queries in relation to the Council's hearing statement and the proposed modifications MM12, 13, 35, 38 and 39:

The Inspector has requested clarification points from the Council for two Matters:

Agendas have been published for the hearings taking place on 23, 24 & 25 October:

12 October 2012 - the Council has provided the Inspector with further information.

The common ground on Gypsies between Ipswich Borough Council and Suffolk Coastal District Council 

The common ground between EDF Energy and Suffolk Coastal District Council on Statement of Common Ground 1

10 October 2012 - the Council has responded to the Inspector's letter dated 26 September 2012 requesting the Council’s thoughts or further comments on a number of matters:

9 October 2012 - updated programme for the Examination hearings issued:

26 September 2012 - all hearing statements have now been received and have been put on the Examination hearings into the Core Strategy page.

The Inspector has responded to the Council's Main Modifications, which can also be seen below.

The latest Main Modifications made by Suffolk Coastal District Council to its Core Strategy has also now been published.

3 September 2012 - the Council has witten to the Inspector with the outstanding information the Inspector is expecting, which comprises of a list of modifications the Council is recommending at this time, together with additional information regarding infrastructure:

24 August 2012 - at the exploratory meeting held on 12 July the Council gave an undertaking to the Inspector to provide an update to the Sustainability Appraisal - this was provided on 24 August 2012:

20 August 2012 - the programme, matters, issues and questions and updated guidance notes for the Examination hearings are available below. Please note the two venues (The Riverside Centre, Stratford St Andrew and the Council Chamber, Suffolk Coastal Offices) for hearing sessions and the key date for submission of statements (5pm, Friday 21 September).

Hearing dates are 23, 24 & 25 October, 6 & 7 November, 14 & 15 November - see the programme below for details of the matters covered and the venues for each session:

10 August 2012 - The Inspector has responded to the Council's letter of 6 August 2012 and concluded that the Core Strategy Examination should be resumed and that the matters should be fully tested at the hearings. "I will therefore resume my Examination and ask the Programme Officer to set in train the arrangements for hearings to take place in due course.  In doing so I must emphasise that I have reached no conclusion on the soundness of the Core Strategy (CS), or on its legal compliance," writes Mr Moore in the letter below.

6 August 2012 - The Inspector raised a number of matters at the exploratory meeting on 12 July 2012, two of which require further specific information from the Council. The letter below and the information included with it comprise the Council’s response on these matters.

Exploratory meeting and pre-hearing meeting

A pre-hearing meeting was held on 12 July 2012 at Trinity Park, Ipswich, to provide an opportunity for procedural and administrative matters relating to the hearings to be explained and discussed.