New Single Local Plan (to 2036)


We formally adopted the Core Strategy for Dacorum on 25 September 2013. Section 29 of the Core Strategy (called Monitoring) includes a commitment to conduct a partial review of the Core Strategy. We confirmed that this would follow completion of the Site Allocations DPD. Through this new Local Plan (partial review), we said we would look again at:

  • household projections
  • the role and function of the Green Belt affecting Dacorum, including long-term boundaries and the potential to identify safeguarded land beyond 2031, and, more significantly,
  • the role that effective co-operation with local planning authorities could play in meeting any housing needs arising from Dacorum. This element will include St Albans district and relevant areas lying beyond the Green Belt.

Issues and Options consultation

What is the new Local Plan?

We are in the process of preparing a new Local Plan for the borough. The first stage of this process is the preparation of an Issues and Options document, which looks at the challenges the Borough is facing to 2036, and how these could be addressed. This document outlines issues and options to ensure the growth that we need is delivered in the right place, and is of the right character and quality. Once finalised, the new Local Plan will replace the Core Strategy and Site Allocations DPDs and ‘saved’ polices from the 2004 Local Plan.

A draft Sustainability Appraisal Working Note, which assesses the potential social, economic and environmental implications of the issues and options put forward, has also been published for comment.
Other supporting documents are also available, including information on key Green Belt sites, which have been suggested by landowners and developers for future housing and other uses.

Why is the new Local Plan important?

Our prime location and excellent connectivity means that we have high growth pressures that we need to plan for. We need more homes and, in particular, homes that you and your families can afford to buy and to rent. It means that we need to continue to create more opportunities for jobs to grow the local economy. We also need to keep improving our transport networks and other key facilities. It also means that we need to protect and enhance what you love about where you live.  

Producing a Local Plan is a priority for us for a number of reasons. The Government is clear that local authorities are expected to have up-to-date plans in place to guide development within their area to plan for the infrastructure, homes and jobs that our residents need. Failure to have an up-to-date plan could risk government intervention and result in the loss of local democratic control of the process. Having an up-to-date plan in place also means that we retain control over where development should be located rather than it being delivered in an ad hoc way as a result of speculative development, sometimes without sufficient benefit to local communities or consideration of local infrastructure.

How can I view comments and where are the documents available?

The consultation, which ran from 9am on Wednesday 1 November until midnight on Wednesday 13 December 2017, is now closed. All comments submitted can be viewed on our Consultation Portal.

How we’ve been developing our Local Plan

The Plan has been informed by evidence and technical studies. Some evidence gathering has already begun to help inform this process. For more details, please visit our evidence base work for the new single Local Plan.

Listening to the community

From consultations for previous planning documents, we know that local communities want us to:

  • keep the character of Dacorum
  • limit the impact on the countryside
  • plan for homes for the older generation and affordable homes
  • plan for local jobs and services
  • make sure our roads can cope
  • provide suitable levels of infrastructure to support new development
  • use brownfield sites

Public exhibitions

A series of public exhibitions, attended by representatives of the Council, were also held:

What happens after the consultation?

We will process all of the feedback from the consultation to inform the next version of the Local Plan for consultation in 2018. We will assess the sites promoted by landowners through the ‘Call for Sites’ process.

For more information about future stages of consultation, please see our Local Development Scheme page for the up-to-date timetable. This timetable will be kept under review.

How can I find out more?

Please contact the Strategic Planning and Regeneration team if you have any questions or require further information:

Telephone: 01442 228660
Address: Strategic Planning and Regeneration Team, Dacorum Borough Council. The Forum, Marlowes, Hemel  Hempstead, Hertfordshire. HP1 1DN

South West Herts Joint Strategic Plan

Neighbouring authorities are increasingly being encouraged to work together to provide the homes, jobs and infrastructure where people want to live.

Along with Hertsmere Borough Council, St Albans City and District Council, Three Rivers District Council and Watford Borough Council we have begun work on a Joint Strategic Plan (JSP) for the South West Hertfordshire area (see map below).

A key aim will be to ensure that infrastructure – such as transport, schools, health, and utilities (for example, water and sewerage) – are properly co-ordinated and delivered alongside the need for new homes and jobs. All five councils also make up a single housing market area, which means they have previously worked together to identify existing and future housing need.

By working together, the councils are confident they will be in a stronger position to deliver, and better fund essential local transport links, health services and educational facilities that local people want to see.

Each council will still be responsible for preparing their own Local Plan, but a JSP will be the first critical stage in local planning work across South West Hertfordshire, setting the strategic framework and shared priorities within which individual local plans can be prepared.

All five Councils have agreed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to take the work forward. The MOU was agreed by us on 27 March 2018. For more information, please view the  Joint Strategic Plan Cabinet agenda item (PDF 2MB).

The councils will work towards agreeing this strategic framework through preparation of a Statement of Common Ground, which is expected to be published in the summer.

Further updates and progress will appear on this page.

Joint Strategic Plan area

Map of local authorities in South West Herts taking part in a Joint Strategic Plan