New Local Plan - FAQs

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What is the purpose of this consultation?

Your Council is writing a new Local Plan. It will show what can be built, and where, up to 2036.

This consultation, also referred to as a Regulation 18 Consultation (as Regulation 18 of the Town and Country Planning (Local Planning) Regulations 2012 requires that various bodies and stakeholders be notified that the council is preparing a plan), is the first stage of the new Local Plan process. The Council will use the responses received through this consultation to inform the content of the new Local Plan.

When is the consultation?

The Council consulted on your views for a new Local Plan between Tuesday 9 January 2018 and Wednesday 21 February 2018. The Local Plan will cover topics such as housing, employment and infrastructure.

The deadline for submitting comments was Wednesday 21 February 2018 at 5pm. The consultation is now closed.

Are there any exhibitions I can attend to get more information?

The Council held a series of public exhibitions around the District where residents could get more information on the consultation and speak directly with planning officers. These were at the following locations:


Main Hall, Redbourn Parish Centre, The Park, Redbourn, AL3 7LR

  • Tuesday 16 January 2pm-8pm

Colney Heath

Community Room, Colney Heath Village Hall, High Street, Colney Heath, AL4 0NS

  • Wednesday 17 January 2pm-8pm


Main Hall, Wheathampstead Memorial Hall, Marford Road, Wheathampstead, AL4 8AY

  • Thursday 18 January 2pm-8pm

Bricket Wood

Tennyson Hall, The Parish Centre, Station Road, Bricket Wood, AL2 3PJ

  • Monday 22 January 2pm-8pm

St Albans

Committee Room 1, District Council Offices, Civic Centre, St Peters Street, St Albans, AL1 3JE

  • Saturday 20 January 10am-1pm
  • Tuesday 23 January 2pm-8pm
  • Wednesday 24 January 2pm-8pm


Harpenden Public Halls, Southdown Road, Harpenden, AL5 1TE

  • Saturday 27 January 10am-1pm
  • Tuesday 30 January  2pm-8pm
  • Wednesday 31 January 2pm-8pm

London Colney

Napsbury Park Sports Pavilion, Pegrum Drive, Napsbury Park, London Colney, AL2 1GE

  • Thursday 8 February, 2pm-8pm
  • Friday 9 February, 2pm-8pm
  • Saturday 10 February, 10am-1pm

St Albans

Marshalswick Community Centre, The Ridgeway, St Albans, AL4 9TU

  • Monday 12 February 2pm-8pm

Where else can I view the documents?

Copies of the consultation booklet and the draft Sustainability Appraisal Note can be viewed at a number of deposit points around the District. These are:

  • St Albans District Council offices
  • Harpenden Town Council offices
  • London Colney Parish Council offices
  • Colney Heath Parish Council offices
  • Redbourn Parish Council offices
  • Sandridge Parish Council offices
  • St Stephen Parish Council offices
  • Wheathampstead Parish Council offices
  • St Albans Library
  • Harpenden Library
  • London Colney Library
  • Redbourn Library
  • Marshalswick Library
  • Wheathampstead Library

Please check the opening hours before you visit.

How can I comment?

There is a special web consultation portal on the Council’s website - Local Plan 2018 - where you can view the comments submitted. 

Why should I use the consultation portal?

If possible, please fill in the online version of this questionnaire.

Why go online?
  • It’s quick and easy.
  • It gives you more – view and download extra information.
  • It’s social – see what others have said.
  • It saves you a stamp and your comments won’t get lost in the post.

Why are my comments "inadmissible"?

Your comment may have been made "inadmissible" if:

  • A blank answer was submitted.
  • Duplicate/multiple answers were given to a question. In these cases the most recent answer has been processed and the older answer made inadmissible. The consultation has allowed people to make multiple submissions/responses to the same question. People may change their minds or have more to add.
  • Two separate text answers were submitted for the same question. These two answers will have been combined as one answer.

You can check the status of your comments by clicking on ‘My Account’ at the top of the consultation portal pages. This will give you details of the comments you have submitted and of any that have been made inadmissible.

Is the Council at liberty to decide all elements of its Local Plan?

St Albans City and District Council is required to have a Local Plan. The Council does not, however, have free rein to decide its Local Plan. It must comply with the law and Government policy, in particular the related National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the Planning Practice Guidance (PPG). A Local Plan must also comply with planning case law and be based on proportionate and justifiable evidence. 

While still largely effective, the current Local Plan dates from 1994 and is one of the oldest in England. The law and national policy is clear that achieving what people want, and resisting what they do not, requires a new Local Plan.

What happens next?

The deadline for submitting comments was 5pm on Wednesday 21 February 2018.

The Council will now use the responses received to inform the content of the new Local Plan. 

Once the new Local Plan is drafted the second stage of the consultation process will take place. This is also referred to as a Regulation 19 Consultation (as Regulation 19 of the Town and Country Planning (Local Planning) Regulations 2012 requires the publication of a Local Plan for comment from local communities and other stakeholders before it is submitted to the Secretary of State for examination). The Inspector will determine during the course of the examination whether the Local Plan is sound and if it complies with all legal requirements.

If the Inspector finds the Local Plan sound, it can be adopted. Once adopted, the Local Plan will replace the 1994 District Local Plan Review.