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Scottish Planning Series: Planning Circular 1 2009: Development Planning



93. Section 22 of the Act and regulation 27 deal with supplementary guidance. This can be adopted and issued by a strategic development planning authority in connection with a SDP, or by a planning authority in connection with a LDP. Any such guidance will form part of the development plan.

94. Regulation 27 requires supplementary guidance to both:

  • Cover topics specifically identified in the SDP or LDP as being topics for supplementary guidance; and
  • Be limited to the provision of further information or detail in respect of policies or proposals set out in the SDP or LDP.

95. Before adopting supplementary guidance, authorities must first publicise it, giving a date before which representations may be made. Authorities must make people who may wish to comment aware of the guidance and give them an opportunity to comment. The authority must then consider any comments, and then send Scottish Ministers a copy of the guidance they wish to adopt. In addition, authorities must send Ministers a statement setting out the publicity measures they have undertaken, the comments they received, and an explanation of how these comments were taken into account. After 28 days have elapsed, the authority may then adopt the guidance unless Scottish Ministers have directed otherwise.

96. Scottish Ministers' intention is that much detailed material can be contained in supplementary guidance, allowing the plans themselves to focus on vision, the spatial strategy, overarching and other key policies, and proposals. Provided there is an appropriate context in the SDP or LDP, suitable topics include:

  • Detailed policies where the main principles are already established
  • Allocations of small areas of land or local policy designations that do not impact on the spatial strategy of the wider plan area
  • Development briefs and masterplans
  • Exact levels of developer contributions or methodologies for their calculation
  • Forestry and woodland strategies
  • Aquaculture framework documents

97. Matters that should be included in the LDP or SDP, and not in supplementary guidance include:

  • departures from national planning policy
  • development proposals of more than local impact
  • green belt boundaries
  • items for which financial or other contributions, including affordable housing, will be sought, and the circumstances (locations, types of development) where they will be sought.

98. Supplementary guidance may be prepared and adopted alongside the SDP or LDP, or subsequently. Guidance adopted in connection with a plan falls when that plan is replaced, but if it remains up-to-date, authorities may readopt it in connection with the replacement plan after limited reconsultation, provided a proper connection with the plan remains. Scrutiny by Scottish Ministers at the pre-adoption stage is likely to focus more on ensuring that the principles of good public involvement and a proper connection with the SDP or LDP have been achieved consistently, than on detailed policy content.

99. Authorities may issue guidance in connection with SDPs or LDPs without going through these procedures, but this should not be termed supplementary guidance and will not form part of the development plan.