Blueprint for districts’ development adopted by councils

The councils have formally adopted their Joint Local Plan - the blueprint for the districts' future development until 2037.

Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils have formally adopted their Joint Local Plan – the blueprint for the districts’ future development until 2037 – providing clarity for communities and developers.

A Local Plan is prepared by a local planning authority and includes policies to tackle key social, economic and environmental issues – providing a framework to guide future planning decisions.

Babergh and Mid Suffolk’s Joint Local Plan (JLP) has been designed to ensure residents and communities have sufficient housing, employment and inward investment, environment and heritage is protected, and the infrastructure is in place for healthy communities and thriving towns.

Work on the JLP began in 2016, going through several iterations and extensive consultation – incorporating feedback from thousands of community responses during its development. It was then subjected to rigorous examination by the Planning Inspectorate before the JLP was declared ‘sound’ in September. This allowed the first phase of the plan to go before councillors at Mid Suffolk District Council’s meeting on Monday, and Babergh District Council’s meeting last night (Tuesday) for formal adoption.

The meetings also considered the proposed Joint Local Development Scheme – the councils’ timetable for adopting new planning documents required as part of the process. This included timescales for the second phase of the JLP – which will include housing allocations and settlement boundaries. This will involve further consultation next year ahead of its submission to the Secretary of State and examination by Planning Inspectors, expected in 2025.

Cllr Andrew Stringer, cabinet member for heritage, planning and infrastructure at Mid Suffolk District Council said:

“The adoption of this Joint Local Plan is a significant milestone that enables the district to agree an up-to-date planning framework to guide development and sustainable growth to 2037. It provides a set of strategic and local development management policies which will be used to inform decisions on planning applications and will help us to reassert a plan-based approach to future development in Mid Suffolk.”

Cllr Sallie Davies, acting cabinet member for planning for Babergh District Council said:

“This is a long process – but it is important that it is followed diligently, with every opportunity for consultation with our communities. We can now have confidence in an agreed, up to date planning framework to help guide our planning decisions. This is a long-awaited huge step forward that will help give clarity to developers as well as our communities.”

All documentation involved in the JLP process, including the Planning Inspectorate report, is available on the councils’ website at and

All papers, minutes, and link to recording of Mid Suffolk District Council’s meeting and Babergh District Council’s meeting are also available on the websites.

Joint Babergh and Mid Suffolk logo