New local plan, publication version: supporting evidence

Our local plan is informed by a range of studies and other reports which collectively form the evidence that supports our local plan. You may find copies of these evidence documents on this page.

This page links to the key evidence for the new local plan. In addition, see Draft Wycombe District Local Plan supporting evidence to view a range of previously published evidence.

Green Belt and Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Assessments

Buckinghamshire green belt assessment

The assessment of the Buckinghamshire green belt is in two parts.

Part 2 green belt assessment

Part 2 assesses a number of sites within the Wycombe district, against the green belt purposes set out by the government in the National Planning Policy Framework. It also makes an initial assessment of their development potential.

The part 2 contains the main report and appendices which contain individual pro-formas which assess each site individually, as well as a critical friend assessment by independent consultants Arup of the part 2 assessment.

Part 1 green belt assessment

Part 2 follows on from a Buckinghamshire green belt assessment, which is known as the "part 1" assessment. 

The methodology sets out how the Green Belt land parcels will be assessed against national green belt purposes. The annexes which accompany the study assesses the parcels of the Bucks Green Belt against the purposes for such land set out in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). This will feed into Part 2 of the study, in which parcels will be looked at in more detail.

Area of outstanding natural beauty site (AONB) assessment

We have produced a report which assesses whether there are any opportunities to meet our housing and economic development needs that should be identified in the local plan for villages that are located within the Chiltern’s AONB but are not within the green belt.

Development capacity of green belt and AONB sites

This report provide high-level development capacity advice for the various housing sites identified in our AONB and green belt assessments.

Buckinghamshire housing delivery study

We have received a study commissioned by the four Buckinghamshire district councils (Aylesbury Vale, Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe) which assesses the delivery of new homes in Buckinghamshire up to the end of March 2033.

The study considers if there is a limit on the number of new homes that can be delivered in Aylesbury Vale, as well as the lead-in times and anticipated delivery rates for the Princes Risborough expansion area, and for four large sites which Chiltern and South Bucks Councils are considering releasing from the Green Belt for residential development.

This study will inform discussions between authorities about delivering the objectively assessed housing need (OAN) for Buckinghamshire.

Buckinghamshire housing market and functional economic areas

A report was jointly commissioned by the four Buckinghamshire district councils (Aylesbury Vale, Chiltern, South Bucks and Wycombe) to identify the housing market area(s) (HMA) and functional economic market area(s) (FEMA) that the Bucks districts lie within.

Following the announcement that Chiltern and South Bucks District Councils would jointly produce a local plan for their areas, a note was produced setting out the impact of the joint plan on the housing market area.

An update to the housing market areas and functional economic market areas report was produced in 2016 to take account of additional data that had been made available since the production of the original report.

Bucks Gypsy, Travellers and Travelling Showpeople accommodation assessment

We have a legal requirement to plan to meet the site/accommodation needs of Gypsies, Travellers and travelling showpeople. This study, received in February 2017 and published in September 2017, has been carried out by consultants Opinion Research Services on behalf of the four districts in Buckinghamshire. It provides robust, up to date evidence about the accommodation needs of Gypsy, Traveller and Travelling Showpeople in the period until 2033, and takes account of changes to the legal definition of a Traveller contained within the Government's Planning Policy for Traveller Sites (2015).

Consultation reports

Statement of consultation

This statement of consultation has been prepared in accordance with regulation 22 (of the 2012 Local Planning Regulations). The report sets out how consultation has helped to shape the new local plan.

Market research report

To help with the development of the new local plan, research was required to explore the views of residents regarding their perceptions, priorities and views on the shape of the plan and the issues it will provide guidance on. The study was designed to reach out to a broad and balanced profile of residents across the district according to location, age, gender and ethnic group.

This report by our consultants Qa Research was published in June 2014, and sets out the findings of the research.

Duty to cooperate

The "duty to cooperate" is a legal duty on authorities to work closely together in preparing their local plans to address strategic issues. 

The duty to cooperate report sets out how we have worked with our partners to meet this legal duty.

Memoranda of understanding

As a part of our ongoing work on the duty to cooperate, we have entered into various memoranda of understanding with neighbouring local authorities and other key partners. These agreements set out how we will work together to meet the duty to cooperate, and how various strategic issues will be addressed.

In August 2015, together with Aylesbury Vale and Chiltern district councils, we produced a memorandum of understanding setting out how we will work together across various topic areas to meet the duty to cooperate. This was then updated in February 2016 to include South Bucks District Council as a part of the earlier agreement.

A separate memorandum of understanding was signed on 8 December 2016 between Wycombe and Aylesbury Vale District Councils setting out how we will work together to address unmet housing needs.

On 13 July 2017, the Buckinghamshire district councils (Wycombe, Aylesbury Vale, Chiltern, and South Bucks ) and the Buckinghamshire Thames Valley Local Enterprise Partnership a memorandum of understanding (MoU). This MoU covers how we have worked together, and will continue to work together, on a wide range of topics, including housing and the economy.

Economic development

Commercial assessment

We commissioned Boyer to provide commercial property advice on the appropriate provision of employment allocations and the scope for additional business development across several potential employment locations in terms of scale and type of employment floor space. We have used the report’s recommendations to advise our draft local plan.

Economy study and employment land review

This report, produced by our consultants Peter Brett Associates, is an assessment of the District's future economic needs and a review of employment land.

Office market assessment

An assessment, undertaken by Chandler Garvey, was carried out to examine the office sector in High Wycombe Town Centre.

Separately, a lease availability assessment for Globe Business Park in Marlow was carried out by Deriaz Slater.

Retail study

The town centres and retail study appraises the district's town centres, estimates the scope for new retail floorspace and provides recommendations for a strategy for retail policy in the district.

Equalities impact assessment

As a public body, we are required to comply with our public sector equality duty set out in the Equalities Act (2010). To that end, we have produced an assessment of the local plan to demonstrate that we have had due regard to the requirements of the act.

Flood risk and water

Strategic flood risk assessment

A strategic flood risk assessment level 2 was completed in September 2017 to assess those proposed site allocations which lie within areas of medium to high flood risk, and consider whether they pass the tests set out in National Planning Policy to be allocated for development, and if they would be deliverable.

The SFRA level 2 is supported by the following appendices:

The strategic flood risk assessment level 1 was completed in November 2014 and was developed to provide an overview of flood risk within the district, a methodology for the application of the sequential test and the information necessary for us to apply the sequential test to potential new developments during the site allocation process. 

Flood risk sequential test

We have produced a flood risk sequential test report as a part of the evidence base for the new local plan. This report demonstrates that most sites allocated for development in the new local plan have been proposed in those areas of lowest possible flood risk, and that where sites have to be allocated in higher flood risk areas that they pass the sequential test, and where appropriate, the exception test.

Princes Risborough groundwater study

Buckinghamshire County Council have produced a report independent of our own flood risk assessment work which analyses the contribution of groundwater to flooding in Princes Risborough. This has been done by carrying out hydraulic modelling of the flood risk from groundwater in the Princes Risborough area for 1 in 100 and 1 in 30 annual exceedance probability groundwater flood events. 

Water quality

The report assesses whether the planned growth will have significant effects on the environmental capacity of the Princes Risborough and Little Marlow wastewater treatment works receiving watercourses and prevent them to meet their Water Framework Directive objectives.

The report also provides an initial modelling and assessment of the required odour buffer at Princes Risborough. 

Housing fact sheets

We have produced a pair of notes which set out the background to housing numbers and distribution in the new local plan. The first of the notes covers issues relating to the District-wide allocation of housing, while the second relates to the two proposed site allocations at Bourne End.

Housing and economic development needs assessment (HEDNA)

The Buckinghamshire Housing and Economic Development Needs Assessment (HEDNA) sets out the housing and economic development needs for the Buckinghamshire housing market area and functional economic market area, consisting of Aylesbury Vale, Wycombe, Chiltern, and South Bucks districts.

The HEDNA was published in December 2016.

An addendum to the HEDNA was published in September 2017. The addendum takes account of property market analysis, and provides additional forecasts (a labour supply and bottom up forecast) and projections based on the past completions of employment land, to place the existing employment land forecasts into context (labour demand) for the purposes of advising the local plan. The HEDNA addendum also includes an erratum to the Bucks HEDNA (December 2016) and provides additional analysis on affordable housing ownership.

Aylesbury Vale, Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe District Councils jointly commissioned consultants to produce the HEDNA. A methodology statement was produced to set out how the assessment was carried out.

The draft findings of the Bucks HEDNA have been shared at a series of stakeholder forums. The presentation which was given at those forums by our consultants may be viewed on this page.

Housing and economic land availability assessment (HELAA), including five year housing land supply

The housing and economic land availability assessment (HELAA) helps to identify future sources of land to help meet the district's development needs. It is a technical study of all potential housing, economic, and retail sites within Wycombe district. It was formerly referred to as the strategic housing land availability assessment (SHLAA).

It includes an assessment of our housing supply against our housing target.  

The September 2017 HELAA report is supported by the following appendices:

A joint methodology was commissioned by Wycombe, Chiltern, South Bucks, and Aylesbury Vale District Councils for their respective housing and economic land availability assessments (HELAA). The purpose of the assessment is to identify a future supply of land which is suitable, available and achievable for housing and economic development uses over the plan period.

Infrastructure

Our local plan allocates land for a range of uses including housing, retail, and business. Appropriate infrastructure is required to ensure that future development is accompanied by the services and facilities needed.

Our infrastructure delivery plan assesses the infrastructure needed to support new development in the Wycombe district.

Our community services team have also produced a note which assesses the need for a new cemetery in the Wycombe district.

Green infrastructure

As part of the green infrastructure work, we have produced a study estimating the canopy cover in Wycombe district. The study also compares other data on human health, wellbeing, and factors such as crime rates, house prices, social deprivation and life expectancy to observe if there was any correlation with tree canopy cover.

Landscape

Landscape character assessment

The landscape character assessment provides a greater understanding of the landscape character of the Wycombe District which can be used to inform policy, planning and management actions. It consists of a main report, analyses of the various key landscape character types found in the Wycombe district, and five appendices.

Landscape sensitivity reports

Landscape sensitivity and capacity studies have been conducted to inform the expansion proposals of some of our towns and villages by highlighting landscape sensitivities, and to inform how much capacity there might be for growth at each settlement. These documents are not landscape or visual impact assessments, which would be carried out at a later stage in the process to assess the impact of a specific development proposal.

Local wildlife sites

A technical note has been produced to support the local plan, supporting the designation of several new local wildlife sites.

Settlement hierarchy

The settlement hierarchy study is an assessment of all the settlements in the district to assess the role they play and allow a judgement on their ability to accommodate growth.

Soundness assessment

This report demonstrates how the Local Plan complies with soundness tests set out in national legislation by carrying out a compliance check.

Strategic sites studies

As a part of assessing the development options to take forward as a part of the allocations process for the new local plan, an appraisal of the constraints and opportunities presented by a variety of sites has been carried out. In producing this study, the landscape assessment of the sites has been considered, along with other site-specific issues relating to a range of factors.

It should be noted that this assessment is for high-level development capacity setting purposes only and further assessment work will be required to confirm the conclusions reached and finalise the urban design principles for each site.

Sustainability appraisal, strategic environmental assessment, and habitats regulation assessment

A sustainability appraisal has been produced in parallel with the preparation of the new local plan. This is because local plans are likely to have significant environmental, social, and economic effects. A sustainability appraisal ensures that potential environmental effects are given full consideration alongside social and economic issues.

Previous stages of the new local plan were accompanied by earlier drafts of the sustainability appraisal. This includes the draft Princes Risborough Town Plan, which now forms a part of the Wycombe District Local Plan. 

In February 2014 we published an issues and options consultation document on our new local plan, which was supported by an initial version of the sustainability appraisal. This sustainability appraisal was made up of two documents. The initial sustainability appraisal report is the initial assessment of the impacts of the new Wycombe District Local Plan against social, economic and environmental objectives. The sustainability appraisal / strategic environmental assessment scoping report establishes the scope and the methodology for the sustainability appraisal process.

Habitats regulations assessment 

The Habitats Regulations Assessment aims to assess the effects (direct or indirect) of the local plan alone or in combination with other plans and projects against the conservation objectives of any European sites within or near the District.  

A draft habitats regulations assessment screening report was also produced in 2016 to support the draft Princes Risborough Town Plan. This has now been superseded by the Local Plan HRA screening report.

Transport assessment work

Assessments were produced to support the new local plan assessing the traffic impact of additional housing and employment-related land use in and around the High Wycombe and Princes Risborough urban areas, and the role of transport network improvements in mitigating that impact.

Buckinghamshire countywide traffic modelling ​

The consultants Jacobs were commissioned to assess the transport impact of the emerging local plan proposals for the districts within Buckinghamshire, comprising Aylesbury Vale, Chiltern, South Bucks and Wycombe.

Phase 3

Phase three of the modelling support work focussed on producing a revised development scenario to update the "do something" scenario identified as a part of the phase two work. Mitigation schemes were also tested, and significant impacts outside of the county were noted, where they proved to be significant. 

The third phase of the Countywide Modelling was supported by two appendices. Appendix A showed the peak and interpeak traffic flows for the main settlements in Buckinghamshire. Appendix B showed the outputs of the modelling at a county level.

Phase 2

Phase two of the modelling support work primarily focussed on identifying improvements to the transport network which may be required in order to mitigate the impacts identified as part of the phase one work, and assessing the extent to which those improvements mitigated the impacts.

Phase 2 of the countywide modelling was supporting by two appendices. Appendix A showed the peak and interpeak traffic flows for the main settlements in Buckinghamshire across a range of different growth scenarios. Appendix B showed the outputs of the modelling at a county level.

Phase 1

This report covers the first phase of work, which primarily focuses on the identification of transport related issues to inform the development of potential mitigation options. There are three scenarios for the County  - a "Do- Minimum" (DM) model run (essentially a base line reference case), and two  "Do Something" (DS1 & DS2) forecast scenarios. DS1 includes a new settlement location at Haddenham and DS2 includes a new settlement location at Winslow. The report refers only to selected model outputs (Plots).

The second stage of work may include further model runs with refinements to the development scenarios and transport schemes to mitigate development impacts and contribute to the final submission.

Appendices A and B show the outputs for each scenario along with the base position from the model (county wide). 

Appendix A (model output plots showing demand flows, demand flow differences, congestion ratios and change in travel time for key settlements in each District)

  • Appendix A: Pages 1 - 84 (external website) covering the demand flows for the Do Minimum AM peak, interpeak, and PM peak, and Do Something 1 AM peak.
  • Appendix A: Pages 85 - 164 (external website) covering the demand flows for the Do Something 1 interpeak and PM peak, and the Do Something 2 AM peak and interpeak
  • Appendix A: Pages 165 - 245 (external website) covering the Do Something 2 PM peak demand flows, and the demand flow differences for the Do Something 1 AM peak, interpeak, and PM peak.
  • Appendix A: Pages 246 - 326 (external website) covering the demand flow differences for the Do Something 2 AM peak, interpeak, and PM peak, and the base year AM peak congestion ratio.
  • Appendix A: Pages 327 - 406 (external website) covering the congestion ratios for the base year interpeak and PM peak, and the Do Minimum AM peak and interpeak.
  • Appendix A: Pages 407 - 506 (external website) covering the congestion ratios for the Do Minimum PM peak, Do Something 1 AM peak, interpeak, and PM peak, and the Do Something 2 AM peak.
  • Appendix A: Pages 507 - 607 (external website) covering the congestion ratios for the Do Something 2 interpeak and PM peak, and the change in travel time for the Do Something 1 AM peak, interpeak, and PM peak.
  • Appendix A: Pages 608 - 667 (external website) covering the change in travel time Do Something 2 AM peak, interpeak, and PM peak.

Appendix B (countywide model output plots showing demand flows, demand flow differences, congestion ratios and change in travel time across the County and for each District) 

  • Appendix B: Pages 1 - 25 (external website) covering the demand flows for the Do Minimum option for Buckinghamshire County and the four district councils.
  • Appendix B: Pages 26 - 53 (external website) covering the demand flows for the Do Something 1 option for Buckinghamshire County and the four district councils, and the demand flows for Do Something 2 for Buckinghamshire County and Aylesbury Vale DC.
  • Appendix B: Pages 54 - 74 (external website) covering the demand flows for the Do Something 2 option for Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe, and the demand flow differences for the Do Something 1 option for Buckinghamshire County and Aylesbury Vale.
  • Appendix B: Pages 75 - 94 (external website) covering the demand flow differences for the Do Something 1 option for Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe, and the demand flow differences for Do Something 2 for Buckinghamshire County and Aylesbury Vale.
  • Appendix B: Pages 95 - 115 (external website) covering the demand flow differences for the Do Something 2 option for Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe, and the congestion ratio base year for Buckinghamshire County and Aylesbury Vale.
  • Appendix B: Pages 116 - 135 (external website) covering the congestion ratio base year for Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe, and the congestion ratio for the Do Minimum option for Buckinghamshire County and Aylesbury Vale.
  • Appendix B: Pages 136 - 155 (external website) covering the congestion ratio for the Do Minimum option for Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe, and the congestion ratio for Do Something 1 for Buckinghamshire County and Aylesbury Vale.
  • Appendix B: Pages 156 - 175 (external website) covering the congestion ratio for the Do Something 1 option for Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe, and the congestion ratio for Do Something 2 for Buckinghamshire County and Aylesbury Vale.
  • Appendix B: Pages 176 - 196 (external website) covering the congestion ratio for the Do Something 2 option for Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe, and the change in travel time for Do Something 1 for Buckinghamshire County and Aylesbury Vale.
  • Appendix B: Pages 197 - 208 (external website) covering the change in travel times for the Do Something 1 option for Chiltern, South Bucks, and Wycombe.
  • Appendix B: Pages 209 - 228 (external website) covering the change in travel times for the Do Something 2 option for Buckinghamshire County and the four district councils.

High Wycombe transport studies

Princes Risborough transport studies

Viability report

Viability assessments support the development of the new local plan. These assessments consider the viability of a number of development scenarios, using both notional and proposed strategic sites.