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Review of the Island's Development Plans

The Environment Department has issued a revised timeline for delivery of the new Island Development Plan. The Department had previously hoped it would be possible to publish the draft Plan in September 2014. It is now expected to publish the draft Plan in February 2015.

Plan Review logo The formal review of the existing Development Plans (the Rural Area Plan 2005 and the Urban Area Plan 2002) began in January 2012. The review will ensure that the land use planning policies in the new Island Development Plan can respond to current and emerging issues over the next 10 years whilst complying with the Strategic Land Use Plan.

Publication of Draft Plan - update August 2014

The Department is currently preparing the new Island Development Plan which will be published in February 2015. The Department had hoped to publish the draft Plan in September, however this was a best estimate and having most recently reviewed the timescales and work required before publication it has become clear that this will not be possible. This is the first time that the Plan Review process has been carried out under the current Planning Law and there are new complex processes and procedures to follow, such as an Environmental Impact Assessment of proposed policies, for which it has been difficult to assign specific timescales until now. The Department has also committed to produce a draft Plan with policies which are based on evidence of Guernsey's social, economic and environmental needs and aspirations and gathering this evidence has taken a considerable time and is ongoing, involving detailed consultation with States Departments and other interested and relevant bodies.

It is now envisaged that the draft Island Development Plan will go the Environment Board for final sign-off in December this year and the draft Plan will then be published in February 2015. Following publication of the draft Plan in February next year, a Planning Inquiry will be held including a public hearing in Autumn, following which the report of the independent Planning Inspector will be referred to the States of Deliberation for consideration.

A summary of the remaining key stages for the Plan-making process are:-

• December 2014 -  final sign-off of draft Plan by Environment Board

• January 2015 - reference to the Strategic Land Planning Group for certificate of consistency with the Strategic Land Use Plan (see section 5 of the Land Planning and Development (Plans) Ordinance, 2007).

• February 2015 - publication of draft Island Development Plan

• Planning Inquiry commences March 2015 and will include a Public Hearing in October 2015

• Preparation and submission of Inspector's report

• States consideration

The Environment Department and the Policy Council will provide more information on the draft Plan and how to engage in the consultation process later this year.


Key Messages, Issues & Options Stage

The 2nd stage public consultation, Key Messages, Issues & potential Options, ran for seven weeks from the 29th July until the 13th September 2013. The consultation addressed some key messages, issues and potential options that emerged during the Environment Department's evidence gathering as part of the Plan Review, principally in the areas of :

- Main and Local Centres

- Housing

- Employment

- The Natural and Built environment

- Open Space and Recreation

The Department has prepared a report summarising the consultation and the responses received

 pdf icon Second Stage Consultation for the Island Development Plan [1Mb]

The Department would like to thank everyone who responded to the consultation. The comments received on the key messages, issues & potential options, alongside technical work and other research carried out by the Department, will feed into the preparation of a Draft Island Development Plan.

Copies of the material published for consultation including the summary booklet ' Key Messages, Issues and Options', Call for Sites Guidance Note, and the supporting Evidence Reports can be downloaded by clicking on the links provided below.

Key Messages. Issues & Options Consultation Material

The 'Key Messages, Issues & Options' booklet provides a useful summary of the key messages, issues & potential options consulted on as part of the 2nd stage.

Click on the PDF to view the pdf icon Key Messages, Issues and Options Booklet [3Mb]

More detailed information, survey results and facts and figures can also be found in the following Evidence Reports:

·  Analysis of Potential Local Centres

· Approach to Agriculture & Redundant Vineries

· Guernsey's Character Study (Stage 1), June 2013

· Guernsey Conservation Area Study, June 2013

· Guernsey Employment Land Study 2013

· Open Space & Outdoor Recreation Survey 2013

· Retail in the Main Centres

· Sites of Special Significance and other designated Nature Conservation Sites, June 2013

· Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment Methodology 

· The Use of Planning Covenants in the Delivery of Affordable Housing in Guernsey, 2012

Call for Sites

The 2nd stage of public consultation also included a 'Call for Sites'. This provided an opportunity for residents, landowners and organisations to suggest land in Guernsey which is, in principle, available for development over the next 10 years. Sites had to fit with the States agreed spatial strategy, which is set out in the Strategic Land Use Plan, so must be located in or around Main and Local Centres.

Submissions received through this process will feed into the assessment of what land may be potentially available and suitable for development so that the most appropriate sites can be considered as part of the Plan Review process as it moves forward. The outcomes of this exercise will be completed and published alongside the publication of a Draft Island Development Plan, expected in February 2015.

It is important to bear in mind, the assessment of a site through this process does not mean that the site will necessarily be allocated for development in the new Plan or that planning permission will be granted for development.

If you have made a Call for Sites submission to the Department you will receive an acknowledgment letter with a reference which should be kept safely for any future correspondence in the next stage.

More information about the 'Call for Sites' can be found in a guidance note produced by the Department.

Click on the PDF to view the:

 - pdf icon Call For Sites Guidance Note [3Mb]

Previous Stage

The first stage public consultation, the General Topics Papers, was held between the 16th January and 16th March 2012. The first stage 'threw the net wide' to inform as many people as possible about the Plan Review and to seek their views and opinions about a wide range of topics.

The Department prepared a report summarising the consultation and the responses received:

Click on the PDF to view the Topic Paper Consultation Report for the Development Plan Review, July 2012. [383kb]

The Department would like to thank everyone who responded to the consultation. The comments received on the topic papers, alongside technical work and other research carried out by the Department, have fed into the Development Plan Review.                  


Staying Informed

The current stage of the Island Development Plan review involves the preparation of the Draft Island Development Plan by the Environment Department based on the work carried out and consultation responses gained from the previous stages. Representations, both for and against the proposed policies, can then be submitted to the Planning Inquiry and will be considered by an Independent Planning Inspector. It is expected that a Draft Island Development Plan will be published in February 2015 and a Public Inquiry into the Draft Plan will commence in March 2015 and will include a Public Hearing in Autumn 2015. An outline of the review process is available here:

Click on the PDF to view the next stages Flowchart pdf icon We are here:- Plan Review Process [364kb]

The Department has also produced a 'Community Guide to the Plan Review' which can be downloaded below; it provides further information on the Island Development Plan review, how to access documents and how Islanders can expect to be consulted:

Please click on the PDF to view the Community Guide pdf icon Community Guide to the Plan Review [293kb]

Alternatively you can collect copies from the Environment Department at Sir Charles Frossard House.

A range of groups and organisations will be contacted directly by the Environment Department for their comments. A full list of consultees is available in the 'Community Guide to the Plan Review'.

If you would like to register for Plan Review updates by email, please send your name and email address to and we will add you to the consultee list.

You can also follow us on Twitter @planreviewgsy

General Information

What is the purpose of a Development Plan?

A Development Plan is effectively a blueprint for the planning and development of Guernsey which, if approved by the States, will form the basis on which the Environment Department will consider planning applications.

Why are the Development Plans being reviewed?

The Plans need to be reviewed to ensure that they are fit for purpose to serve the Island over the coming years.

In addition, Development Plans for the Island must be in line with the new Strategic Land Use Plan, a statutory document put in place by the Policy Council of the States of Guernsey, which was adopted in November 2011.

The Review process will take two to three years. While this may seem like a long time, this is to ensure that the Department is able to carry out necessary research and that the public have sufficient opportunity to be involved in the Review. The Review will include an Inquiry into the new Plan(s) by an independent Planning Inspector.

It should be noted that the Plan Review will not change how planning applications are considered now. Until the Plan Review is complete and the new policies are formally approved by the States (envisaged in 2016), current Development Plans and policies remain in force and planning applications will continue to be determined according to those policies.

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