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LDF Evidence Base

Work is now under way in a number of areas that would have been brought together as part of the replacement Local Plan. All of this work can be progressed under the current system and will be crucial to the development of the Local Development Framework (LDF).

The LDF must be based on a robust information base and outlined here are a number of background studies:

Sustainable Urban Extensions

Urban Extension Studies were prepared for the Growth Towns of Corby, Kettering and Wellingborough in 2005. East Northamptonshire Council used this methodology to prepare similar urban extension studies for the six towns in the district in 2006. Given the proposal to designate Rushden as a growth town in the emerging core strategy review, the urban extension study has been updated for Rushden.

Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study

This study was prepared by PMP on behalf of East Northamptonshire Council and was published in January 2006

Integrated Approach to Sustainable Rural Planning in East Northamptonshire

This project was commissioned by the Countryside Agency in conjunction with East Northamptonshire Council's planning policy department. The aim was to develop a framework for sustainable rural planning policies, for a study area of East Northamptonshire, to inform the forthcoming Local Development Document (LDD). The results have been developed to be applicable to other parts of East Northamptonshire and rural areas of England.
Please note due to the size of the document it has been split into two parts. However it still may take a while to download.

Strategic Flood Risk Assessment

In accordance with national planning policy (National Planning Policy Framework), supporting Technical Guidance and the earlier Planning Policy Statement 25 Development and Flood Risk Practice Guide (December 2009), the Council has been required to undertake a Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA), to assess the overall impact of future development proposals upon flooding.

In response, the Council appointed URS (formally Scott Wilson), in November 2010, to undertake an SFRA in accordance with the latest advice. The initial District-wide Level 1 SFRA was completed in August 2011. The Environment Agency (EA) formally advised the Council about the likely need to undertake detailed Level 2 SFRA work for certain sites/ locations, in a letter dated 26 September 2011.

In response to the EA’s advice, the Council asked URS to complete a more detailed Level 2 SFRA examining specific potential development sites around Rushden and Irthlingborough. This work was completed in November 2012. The EA (response, 14 December 2012) has endorsed the Level 2 SFRA in respect of the assessment of sites at Rushden and Irthlingborough. However, the EA still considers that further assessment work regarding allocated sites around Oundle (e.g. Oundle Marina) is still required.

Level 2 SFRA Report and Appendices:

Level 2 SFRA Report

Study Area

Rushden Lakes

Rushden Town Centre Sites

Finedon Road Stream, Irthlingborough

Pluvial modelling

The current SFRA replaces the earlier Faber Maunsell/ Aecom Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (October 2006)

Rural Strategy

The Rural Strategy for East Northamptonshire sets out the main objectives and priorities that need to be tackled to achieve sustainable rural communities in the District. It contains a list of action points to help the council and other local organisations put the policy into practice and will inform the local development documents.

Market Towns and Rural Regeneration

East Northamptonshire Council in conjunction with The County Council and the borough councils of Corby, Kettering, Wellingborough has commissioned consultants to establish a framework for building the sustainable rural communities of the future, in the North Northamptonshire Growth Area.


Work is ongoing in the towns and site specifically encouraging the regeneration of the District. A masterplanning project has recently been completed in Thrapston and is currently underway in Higham Ferrers Rushden town centres. Development briefs are to be produced on a number of sites to encourage comprehensive and sympathetic new development.

District Capacity Assessment

Consultants were commissioned to assess the capacity of East Northamptonshire to accommodate growth. Broadly it concluded that the District could accommodate more development over the next twenty years.

Discussion Papers

In July 2001 a key issues document was published to ascertain the public's views on the main issues relating to planning within the District. Response to the document was good and in March 2003 a summary document was produced.

Owing to the Governments proposed planning reforms and significant changes to planning policy at national and regional level a series of discussion papers are under production.

The discussion papers will inform the preparation of new Local Development Documents. These papers are based on geographic areas and seek to encourage debate on key planning issues facing the towns and villages of East Northamptonshire up to 2021.

Research and Monitoring

Research and monitoring work is ongoing with regular updating of residential and employment land availability information. There is ongoing monitoring of housing and employment development and retail monitoring, giving us an insight into town centre vitality and viability.

Urban Potential Study

Urban Potential Study - 2006 update

All authorities are required to undertake an assessment of urban capacity; examining how better use can be made of land within urban areas.

The initial urban potential study for East Northamptonshire, produced in 2002, has now been updated to take account of changes since that date, for example where sites now have planning permission they have been removed from the study to avoid double counting.

The Non Technical Summary gives a broad overview; Volume 1 includes the main findings and the maps for each town; Volume 2 contains the Appendices, with more detailed tables and technical information.

Employment Land Review

Northants Highways was commissioned by East Northamptonshire Council in June 2006 to undertake an employment land review. The purpose of the study is to inform the Council's preparation of its Development Plan Documents, which will be part of the emerging North Northamptonshire Joint Local Development Framework.

Sustainability Assessment of Sites for Development Plan Documents

In November 2006 East Northamptonshire District Council commissioned Roger Tym and Partners to undertake a detailed assessment of potential sites for future housing and employment allocations in the district. The final report was produced in 2007.

Rural Business Audit

During 2006 a joint audit was undertaken by Smiths Gore and The University of Reading for East Northamptonshire, Daventry and South Northamptonshire on rural businesses located within these areas. The primary aim was to provide information on the existing rural businesses, from this information analysis was undertaken and another document on recommendations was also produced.

Village Planning Boundaries

This document clarifies and summarises the process that was undertaken in the formulation of the village planning boundaries for the settlements in East Northamptonshire. It overviews the work that was undertaken and the conclusions that this work came to.

Community Strategy

The Council's emerging Development Plan Documents (DPDs) need to take account of the Community Strategy throughout their preparation.

Northamptonshire County Council Documents

The County Council produce a range of strategies, plans and policies, which feed into the preparation process for East Northamptonshire Council's DPDs.

Other documents of particular relevance include: Northamptonshire Structure Plan (March 2001), Local Transport Plan 2006-2011 and Rights of Way Improvement Plan 2006/7-2010/11. All of these documents are available on the County Council's website:

Construction and Design

A number of documents and strategies continue to emerge at all levels regarding "good design". Many of these are produced by the Government (Communities and Local Government) and other agencies such as the Police and Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment.

Other documents to consider are "Secured by Design" and further information is available on our website in the Design section.

King's Cliffe

The Core Strategy and Rural North, Oundle and Thrapston Plan define King's Cliffe as a "Local Service Centre". To this end, many local projects have been taking place, with King's Cliffe as the focus for the rural north of the District. A development brief for the development of land at Wood Road was adopted in September 1999.

Housing Documents

A number of key studies and strategies have been prepared or are under preparation, enabling the Council's emerging DPDs to adopt a robust approach to housing development in the District.

River Nene Regional Park

The emerging Regional Plan and Core Spatial Strategy both endorse the development of a "River Nene Regional Park", through the development of tourism and green infrastructure projects along the course of the river.

Oundle, Thrapston, Raunds and Irthlingborough Health checks

Market town "health checks" have been undertaken for Oundle and Thrapston, which are intended to inform possible masterplans or Area Action Plans for these towns. Both health check documents have been important in informing the Rural North, Oundle and Thrapston Plan.

Rural Potential Study

Following on from the Urban Potential Study, the Council has also undertaken a Rural Potential Study, looking at the capacity of the District's 54 villages to accommodate additional windfall and small scale development. This was undertaken in 2003 and reviewed in 2007.

Other Evidence Documents

Certain other documents have been identified as being of particular importance in informing the preparation of the Council's three emerging DPDs. These cover different topics: equestrianism, water and sewerage infrastructure and biodiversity at a local level.