Chichester Local Plan 2021 - 2039: Proposed Submission

Ended on the 17 March 2023

Chapter 6: Place-making, Health and Well-being



(3)6.1. The council is committed to securing a high-quality environment and wishes to secure design which is inspired by and reinforces the individual character of the settlements within the district. Irrespective of the approach to architectural style taken development of all scales should be attractive and interesting, enrich the locality and improve the quality of people's every day architectural experiences.

(1)6.2. Achieving high standards of design is vital for ensuring that the district retains and enhances its character over time. Development needs to be designed to be successful over the long-term, whether that be in terms of being able to adapt to changing circumstances or only using appropriately durable materials. Securing good quality design is key to delivering sustainable development through the creation of successful places and civic pride. It raises the quality of our environment, can discourage crime, improves the quality of life and can help attract investment.

(2)6.3. High-quality design is a positive investment for society as a whole. Any short term savings achieved through the provision of compromised design quality are likely to be hugely outweighed by the long-term negative impacts of the district's economic, social and environmental sustainability. Achieving good design, particularly for larger scale proposals, will require early engagement with relevant statutory bodies and wherever possible public involvement.

(1)6.4. It is vital that all aspects of design are properly addressed, ranging from broader issues such as the layout, scale and massing of buildings, to more detailed aspects such as the architectural coherence and use of materials that are fundamental to achieving quality within the built environment. New development that fails to take the opportunity to improve the local character and distinctiveness, and quality of, an area and how it functions, will be refused.

(1)6.5. Development proposals must seek to create safe and secure environments. Solutions should be integrated and not delivered in a way that reduces the attractiveness of places or increases the fear of crime. Negative design responses such as obscured glazing, solid roller shutters, high or solid gates and boundaries and external security bars often result in hostile environments and are approaches that will not usually be considered acceptable. Careful design which integrates crime prevention features into the overall design of a building or space rather than adding them on at the end can usually avoid the need for negative responses. Solutions such as good passive surveillance, well positioned entrances, good lighting, clear circulation routes, and secure boundaries will be considered appropriate.

(1)6.6. The use of the council's pre-application advice service is recommended to provide input at an early stage to evaluate design proposals and provide advice and observations to help improve and add value to schemes. More detailed guidance on design issues is provided in the council's supplementary planning documents. Further advice can also be found in publications produced by other external organisations.

(24)Policy P1 Design Principles

All development shall achieve a high design quality, consistent with the ten characteristics set out in the National Design Guide (or any subsequent amendments):

  1. Context: enhances the surroundings
  2. Identity: attractive and distinctive
  3. Built form: a coherent pattern of development
  4. Movement: accessible and easy to move around
  5. Nature: enhanced and optimised
  6. Public spaces: safe, social and inclusive
  7. Uses: mixed and integrated
  8. Homes and Buildings: functional, healthy and sustainable
  9. Resources: efficient and resilient
  10. Lifespan: made to last

Consistency must also be achieved with the following:

  1. Development will be designed to make a positive contribution to creating a safe and secure environment by integrating measures for security and designing out the fear of crime and opportunities for crime and anti-social behaviour.
  2. All Design and Access statements submitted in support of applications shall clearly explain how the proposed development delivers all of the above principles, and the other design-related policies of this plan. Where no Design and Access statement is required for the application type a Design Statement must be provided to demonstrate how the proposals comply.

All development proposals must demonstrate, in a Sustainability Statement, that:

  1. The proposals apply sound sustainable design, good environmental practices, sustainable building techniques and technology, including the use of materials that reduce the embodied carbon of construction and make use of re-used or recycled materials;
  2. The proposals include measures to adapt to climate change, such as the provision of green infrastructure, sustainable urban drainage systems (SuDS), suitable shading of pedestrian routes and open spaces, a mixture of drought and rain tolerant native planting and the incorporation of green or blue roofs or green walls;
  3. The reduction of the impacts associated with traffic or pollution (including air, water, noise and light pollution) will be achieved, including but not limited to the promotion of car clubs and facilities for charging electric vehicles.

Local Character and Distinctiveness


(1)6.7. No development site exists in isolation, it is important that proposals of all scales consider the wider context of their setting. The settlements and wider landscape within the district have considerable and unique character. It is important to maintain the separate distinct identity of different settlements and a clear transition between built up areas and the countryside. In order to retain and enhance distinctiveness, proposals should identify local characteristics at an early design stage and use these to inform the development of designs.

(1)6.8. Developments should seek to work creatively with and respond to existing topographical character. To protect and enhance local character it will be expected that existing landscape, built features, materiality and view corridors are identified and that proposals seek to incorporate these alongside opportunities for the creation of new landmark buildings and vistas. Development will be expected to respect, preserve and enhance the significance of heritage assets and their setting, and where appropriate use Conservation Area Appraisals and other historic character tools to determine the appropriateness of designs. It is not the intention of the policy to require that new development conforms to certain architectural styles or creates a pastiche of historic designs. This policy supports innovative and contemporary approaches which respond to and complement the local context.

6.9. Lack of existing or distinctive character locally will not be considered justification for further non-descript or placeless development. In these locations new development will be expected to explore what can be done to start to give a place locally inspired identity. Within larger housing developments the provision of too many identical or similar house types should be avoided unless this provides benefit to the overall architectural integrity of the scheme through repetition. Larger scale development will be likely to benefit from a variety of densities, built form, street hierarchies and appearance or style of development to help create areas with different character and to aid way finding.

(12)Policy P2 Local Character and Distinctiveness

Development will be expected to protect, enhance and reflect the positive characteristics and distinctiveness of the local area and contribute towards local identity. It shall be a positive addition to the surrounding area, being integrated within the built environment and landscape.

In particular it will be expected that development:

  1. Respects and enhances the character of the site and makes a positive contribution to the sense of place, street scene, local character, and distinctiveness of an area;
  2. Enhances the local environment by way of its appearance and impact on the street scene. Particular attention should be paid to the architectural form, context, proportion, height, massing, siting, layout, materials, density, scale, orientation, detailed design features, roofscapes, building typologies and silhouettes, topography and landscaping features.
  3. Has regard to vertical and horizontal rhythms, for example created by window arrangements and architectural composition;
  4. Reflects the pattern, size and arrangement of existing street blocks, plots and buildings, including building lines;
  5. Respects, preserves and enhances heritage assets and historic features, their settings and views to and from them;
  6. Retains existing boundary treatments where these contribute positively to the street scene. Proposed boundary treatments should be of a design which is characteristic of the area including height, materials, detailing and extent of enclosure;
  7. Respects the existing natural features of the site, including landform, trees, hedges, and biodiversity;
  8. Retains and where possible enhances or creates vistas, panoramas and views of natural and built landmarks and protected landscapes;
  9. Contributes towards the creation of a distinctive, integrated and coherent place even in areas which lack discernible or well-developed local character.

Regardless of the character of the locality or whether a contemporary or traditional design approach is taken new buildings will be expected to achieve a consistent architectural style with individual elements adding up to a coherent whole. Buildings shall have a sufficient texture, depth and detailing to provide visual interest. This will be particularly important at street level where buildings will need to relate to a human scale and where appropriate contribute towards active frontages.

Where it is deemed that a well-considered and deliberate contrast to certain characteristics would benefit the design or relationship to its context the development will still be expected to relate to the points above and justify any non-compliant areas.



6.10. Land is a scarce resource and there are competing demands for its use within the district. A design led approach to achieving the optimal appropriate density for each site will be expected which considers the context and character of the site and local area, access points, the capacity of local infrastructure and characteristics of the surrounding area. The council will refuse applications which fail to make efficient use of land or propose a density that would be inappropriate for its context.

(2)6.11. There is a need for development to make the most efficient use of land and to achieve higher densities than those found historically within much of the district. The expectation of a minimum of 35 dwellings per hectare is significantly greater than the densities currently seen more widely across the district and will as such require innovative design approaches and site-specific solutions to achieve this target whilst protecting the character of the local areas and delivering successful places. In well-connected more central sites higher densities will likely be possible however, this will also require innovation and well resolved site-specific design proposals to be achieved successfully.

(11)Policy P3 Density

Development proposals must make the most efficient use of land. The optimum density of a development should result from a design-led approach to determine the capacity of the site based on the amount of land suitable for development once all constraints are taken account of. It will be expected that particular attention is given to:

  1. The site context and character of the surrounding area in which it is located, including consideration of any nearby heritage assets or important landscape;
  2. The use of appropriate innovative design solutions to achieve higher densities whilst achieving high-quality place making;
  3. The desirability of achieving higher densities in urban areas;
  4. Its current and future level of accessibility by walking, cycling and public transport;
  5. The need to achieve high-quality design;
  6. The need to minimise environmental impacts, including detrimental impacts on the amenities of adjoining occupiers; and
  7. The capacity of surrounding infrastructure.

Layout and Access


(2)6.12. The careful layout of highways, public spaces, private spaces and buildings are vital components of high-quality design. All development should use layout and access to assist with integrating proposals into their surroundings rather than being separated from them or inward looking. Good layouts can help to promote walking, cycling and public transport use, and are easy, attractive and safe for people to find their way around. For larger scale developments the use of cul-de-sacs should generally be avoided and a connected network of spaces and streets with clear hierarchy created.

6.13. Development should be accessible to all, including people with disabilities, older people, people with visual or mobility constraints, and children. Communities value a connected network of Public Rights of Way, bridleways and access routes to the countryside and the wider South Downs National Park. Developments should provide pedestrian and cycle-priority environments which reinforce existing connections and make new ones where feasible for the benefit of both existing and new users.

6.14. Where development is proposed to be phased or is located adjacent to a site with development potential it will be expected that proposals give due regard to protecting the optimum future development opportunity of adjacent sites not inhibiting wider opportunities for built form, access, connections, green links, open spaces and creating a sense of place. The layout of proposed uses and facilities should also be located where the greatest number of existing and new users can access them easily and positioned thoughtfully to avoid conflict between uses and use local facilities such as schools, community buildings and parks as destinations.

6.15. Development should be designed to retain and provide streets which are principally defined by the position of built form rather than the route of the carriageway. Design proposals should respond to the opportunities a site presents to make best use of solar gain where this can be achieved without compromising good urban design or creating issues of overheating. The servicing needs of development proposals should be well resolved and integrated into the design. This includes the provision of convenient and integrated waste and recycling storage which provides easy access without having adverse impact on the visual amenity of the area.

6.16. Development should be designed to provide well defined entrances, active frontages and edges, providing visual links between the street and buildings taking advantage of opportunities for natural surveillance. In prominent locations such as street corners and sites terminating vistas it will be expected that designs respond appropriately to their increased visibility within the street scene. In these locations poorly fenestrated and blank elevations, the backs of buildings, parking, garages, large expanses of boundary fence or wall and inappropriate material junctions are likely to be resisted.

(1)6.17. Layout proposals should locate car and cycle parking where it is clearly and directly accessible to intended users, likely to be well used and benefit from sufficient passive surveillance. At all scales development which proposes parking will be expected to integrate the provision in order that it does not dominate new or existing street scenes or open space and ensure cycle storage is integrated within the built form or a good quality detached structure. Within larger scale development using a range of parking solutions appropriate to the context is likely to be the most successful approach to achieving required capacities whilst protecting visual amenity.

6.18. Over reliance on front of plot or parking within street scenes results in a provision that is visually dominant and streets that lack enclosure. This approach will not be acceptable unless strong and extensive landscaping to compensate for the lack of spatial enclosure is proposed. Large rear parking courts should be avoided where possible for residential developments as these are less private (present greater opportunity for crime and anti-social behaviour) and potentially lack passive surveillance. To prevent anti-social parking, provision should be clearly defined and appropriate consideration given to markings to ensure these are aesthetically pleasing. Where provided, electric vehicle charging points must be suitably located, sited and designed to avoid street clutter and where future provision is likely it will be expected that due regard is given to how the current design can successfully facilitate future installation.

(9)Policy P4 Layout and Access

The layout and access of spaces and buildings shall be designed to ensure that developments:

  1. Provide safe, direct and attractive conditions for inclusive access, egress and active travel between all locations and provide good links to integrated public transport;
  2. Create pedestrian and cycle-priority environments which are not dominated by vehicles whether moving or parked;
  3. Where appropriate, use buildings to clearly define the spaces around them, including through the continuity of existing or proposed street frontages and consistent use of building lines;
  4. Locate principal frontages to face the most important public space or highway, whilst also providing a similar level of visual interest on other prominent frontages or visible facades;
  5. Are easy to navigate, using features to provide landmarks, vistas and wayfinding tools, and making use of the layout to protect and enhance views that are important for navigation;
  6. Are designed with well-considered fenestrations and entrances on principal elevations that ensure all entrances are attractive, safe and legible;
  7. Provide parking for both vehicles and bicycles that is designed to be safe and well-related to the users of the site and wider adjacent area. This must not prejudice active frontages, the provision of future electric vehicle charging points, or street enclosure and must minimise impact on amenity and be visually attractive;
  8. Provide servicing arrangements including access, drop off, loading and waste / recycling storage that is integrated and designed to be safe and well related to the users of the site and wider adjacent area whilst minimising impact on amenity and be visually attractive;
  9. Do not prejudice the optimum future development of or access to, adjoining plots or development phases.

Spaces and Landscaping


6.19. The design of open spaces and landscaping are essential to the delivery of high-quality development and must be seen as an integral part of the overall design process that contributes positively to the site and its surroundings. The spaces around and in between buildings are equally important as the built forms themselves and significantly influence people's sense of place, security and belonging. Poorly defined and poorly lit spaces that have no clear function can detract from environmental quality, reduce safety and security and will therefore be resisted.

6.20. Public realm including streets, squares, parks, open spaces and pedestrian and cycle routes should be attractive and accessible for people of all abilities. Public open space should strive to be multifunctional, be well located, be overlooked, promote ease of movement and serve the whole community. The use of spaces as public or private must be clearly defined and it will be expected this distinction is achieved in an aesthetically pleasing and appropriate manner for the context and level of visibility. Where a defined boundary treatment is required to achieve this, it must be locally characteristic, of high quality and designed appropriately for the use of the space, privacy requirements and its relationship with the public realm. Where boundaries are exposed to public realm or shared open space such as communal gardens or parking the use of timber close board fences will be resisted in place of high quality and more durable approaches.

6.21. The materials and street furniture (including lighting) proposed for public realm and shared open space must be robust, of high quality, appropriate for the local character, well positioned and avoid unnecessary clutter. In particularly sensitive environments such as those impacting heritage assets, or their setting, even greater care will be required to avoid harm. The council will seek to retain historic street furniture such as, but not limited to, cobbles, kerbs, street names and signs, street lamps, coal hole covers, historic advertising signs and post boxes where these contribute to local character and distinctiveness even outside of conservation areas.

6.22. Children's play areas should be located in accessible places that are well overlooked but do not risk unacceptable disturbance to existing or proposed neighbouring uses. The design of play spaces should be appropriate to the local character and avoid the use of more urban-style, brightly coloured play areas where these would not sit comfortably within their setting or would result in visual harm. In more sensitive locations natural play installations may be an appropriate solution through the provision of play areas that are more visually integrated into their setting.

(1)6.23. The impact of climate change will result in more extreme weather events and increased temperatures. Development proposals including public realm must be proactively designed to anticipate and respond to these changes maximising opportunities for sustainable drainage and biodiversity functions. Within external spaces and landscaping this could include, for example, seeking and optimising opportunities for shade and green infrastructure and sustainable drainage systems that whilst being functional are designed to contribute an attractive feature and recreational function to the scheme.

(1)6.24. Well selected and sited planting can also play an important part in the provision of shade not only to external spaces but also internal ones. The use of deciduous trees and structures with climbing plants can provide summer shading which if sited and selected appropriately (deciduous, shape and density of foliage) helps prevent overheating within buildings through unwanted solar gain, reducing the reliance on energy intensive mechanical cooling.

(1)6.25. Tree planting should be recognised from the outset as an integral part of any development scheme in order that planting schemes are appropriate for the intended use and provide diversity in age, size and species. Planting must be designed to complement existing and proposed features of the development and views into sites from their surroundings. It will be expected that tree planting will be used to enhance public areas within developments including the use of street trees and be appropriately selected for longevity including expected growth size. In proposing the position of trees and planting due care will be expected to prevent the loss of open outlook and clear sightlines that would otherwise be beneficial for community safety.

(1)6.26. Consideration must be given to the appropriate use of plant species, for soft landscaping the use of locally native species and those that support habitats should be prioritised. Ornamental planting or plants and trees not native to the area can create inappropriate suburban character if used in the wrong context. Non-locally native and ornamental planting can be appropriate in a limited number of contexts such as areas close to buildings, including front, rear and communal gardens and in appropriate urban contexts. Where proposed the use of shrubs and ornamental planting should provide variety to bring greater wildlife benefits such as attracting pollinating insects. The use of the site must also be factored into the selection of planting schemes, for example, selecting appropriate and safe planting near play spaces.

(1)6.27. For certain types of development, the provision of large car parking areas may be required. This provision can have a highly detrimental impact on the appearance of an area and will be resisted unless appropriate for the context, carefully located and designed. Generous mitigation using green infrastructure will be expected to reduce the visual impact of large numbers of vehicles and hard surfacing. Sustainable drainage measures will also be expected whilst using materials that are appropriate for the level of use and the context.

(13)Policy P5 Spaces and Landscaping

Development will be expected to provide designs for open spaces and landscaping that are integrated and positively contribute to the development and surrounding context.

In particular it will be expected that development including open space and landscaping:

  1. Provides for safe, inclusive, multifunctional, attractive, uncluttered, coordinated public realm that enhances the setting of and spaces between buildings;
  2. Will not leave or result in the creation of undefined poorly integrated or poorly lit areas with no clear function;
  3. Provides clear, attractive and appropriate definition between public, semi-private and private spaces;
  4. Is designed to integrate climate change adaption measures that whilst functional also seek to enhance the setting visually and recreationally;
  5. Proposes high quality, well designed and robust street furniture and lighting appropriate for the context whilst retaining existing furniture which contributes positively, such as historic features;
  6. Proposes the use of high quality and durable materials that are appropriate for the context and reinforce local distinctiveness.
  7. Uses permeable materials for proposed and replacement hard surfacing or ensures surfacing can drain to sufficient adjoining permeable land within the site;
  8. Will deliver well-considered planting schemes that are appropriate for the local context, promote biodiversity and prioritise the use of locally native species and the retention of existing trees (unless there is sound justification for removal);
  9. Proposals should contribute positively to connecting existing green infrastructure corridors and seek to create new ones;
  10. Exploit opportunities for appropriate new tree planting, including street trees, which enhance the public realm and where possible are positioned to provide additional solar shading benefits to both external and internal spaces;
  11. Seeks to retain boundary treatments that contribute positively to local character and proposes boundary treatments that are of a style, height, quality and type appropriate to the context and designed to allow the passing of wildlife between sites;
  12. Proposes large areas of parking only in appropriate contexts and where sustainable drainage measures will be provided. The visual impact must be mitigated by siting, design and generous planting schemes.



6.28. At all scales sustainable development will be expected to protect the amenity of an area, its users, neighbours, residents and occupiers, including a development's future users, residents and occupiers. The council will expect development to integrate into its surroundings and protect visual amenity whilst respecting existing buildings and land uses around the development site.

(1)6.29. Private space, shared space and the design quality and construction of communal spaces all contribute to amenity. With greater pressure for higher densities and intensification of uses it is essential that amenity considerations are at the fore during the design process. Residents, occupiers and users can be seriously affected by poorly resolved issues impacting amenity such as space (internal and external, public and private), overlooking, aspect, layout, privacy, daylight, sunlight, outlook, microclimate and disturbance. Disturbance includes a number of factors such as noise, artificial lighting, smell, pollution, erosion, flooding and speed, volume and type of traffic.

6.30. Given the potential for impact on quality of life the council will apply policies dealing with amenity rigorously where new development, including extensions and alterations, would unduly affect an area and its users, occupiers and residents. Whilst the most effective and efficient use of land and buildings is positively encouraged this must not be achieved at the expense of unacceptable loss of amenity for existing and future users, occupiers or neighbours.

6.31. Inappropriately small homes can negatively impact on the health of occupiers. The delivery of good internal space standards, both in new dwellings and conversions, is vital to ensure that people can access decent housing. The council will therefore expect new homes as a minimum to achieve nationally described space standards. More spacious dwellings can also allow more people to work from home, thereby supporting economic growth whilst minimising the need to travel.

6.32. The council will make use of established industry standards when assessing schemes, including 'Site Layout Planning for Daylight and Sunlight' (BRE Trust, 2011) having regard to context and other material considerations, 'Professional Practice Guidance on Planning and Noise, (2017); and any other relevant or updated documents. Where supporting information about amenity impacts require independent technical assessment, the applicant will be required to pay for this assessment.

(13)Policy P6 Amenity

Planning permission for any development or change of use will be required to ensure that it would not result in material nuisance and or unacceptable impact on the amenity of an area, its users, neighbouring residents and occupiers, including those of the future development and that it would be likely to not be detrimental to human health.

All development shall ensure that it:

  1. Provides all potential users with an acceptable level of amenity; and
  2. Does not have an unacceptable impact on the amenity of the users of other buildings and spaces.

Development will be supported if:

  1. Visual amenity from the public realm and adjoining sites is not unacceptably compromised;
  2. Lighting design is appropriate for the context and proposed or existing use. It must also be targeted for energy efficiency and to avoid light pollution, particularly in sensitive areas such as designated landscapes and historic environments;
  3. Acceptable standards of privacy are provided without a diminution of design quality;
  4. Adequate outlooks are provided avoiding wherever possible any undue sense of enclosure or unacceptable levels of overlooking or perceived overlooking;
  5. It would not have an unacceptable impact on levels of daylight of the host building or adjoining property, including their gardens or outdoor spaces;
  6. The adverse impact of noise is reduced to an acceptable level through the use of attenuation, distance, screening, or layout/orientation;
  7. Service equipment is fully integrated into the building envelope or located in visually inconspicuous locations within effective and robust screening/enclosure, and does not cause disturbance through its operation.

Housing Space Standards

In the following cases, the gross internal floor area of new dwellings (excluding purpose built student accommodation, hotels, residential institutions) shall meet as a minimum the nationally described space standards (or any subsequent standards):

  1. All dwellings in new build developments, regardless of tenure.
  2. Where practicable, having regard to the physical constraints of the existing building, changes of use and conversions.

Built-in internal storage areas are included within the overall minimum gross internal areas. Garages, balconies, detached ancillary buildings and communal areas shared with other dwellings will not be considered to contribute towards meeting the minimum space standards.

External Amenity Space

It will be expected that developments provide an appropriate level of external amenity space that reflects the type and size of the use and where possible is orientated to maximise its appeal. This space should be practical in layout, free from excessive noise or disturbance, pollution or odour, oppressive enclosure, unacceptable loss or lack of privacy, and overshadowing.

In exceptional circumstances development without or lacking external amenity space may be permitted where the approach can be suitably justified or is necessary to secure the positive reuse of a historic building or regeneration site within a conservation area.

Separation distances

Development shall maintain suitable separation distances between the windows of habitable rooms in dwellings (principal living rooms, principal dining areas, bedrooms and kitchens where there is not separate dining room) and the windows and walls of other properties to ensure that an appropriate level of amenity is provided and retained for all residential occupiers.

It will generally be expected that no less than 21 metres is proposed between facing principal windows of habitable residential rooms and windows of other uses that could result in significant overlooking. Appropriate distances will be considered on an individual site and design basis considering aspects such as density, scale, height differences and site levels.

In circumstances where land levels vary or the difference in building heights is greater than one storey longer distances may be required. Shorter distances will be permitted where they are necessary to secure the positive reuse of a historic building or are consistent with the character of the local area subject to it being demonstrated that an appropriate level of amenity for existing and future occupiers would be achieved.

Alterations and Extensions


6.33. The council is committed to ensuring that all building alterations and extensions deliver good design. Achieving this is usually about ensuring an extension or alteration has regard to the host building and its context in terms of scale, mass, height, siting, character, materiality and spacing. Successful alterations and extensions can reduce the need for complete redevelopment and demolition making best use of existing building materials whilst helping to retain existing character and local identity.

6.34. As is expected of new buildings it is important that alterations and extensions to existing development result in good quality contributions to the built environment and an overall coherent approach in appearance. The relationship with the street scene needs to be carefully considered including building lines, patterns, roof lines, pitches and shapes of roofs, views and orientation.

6.35. In cases where a site or building is located within an area with established local patterns and forms or contributes to the group appearance or symmetry of a designed collection of buildings, terrace or a semi-detached pair all proposals will be expected to have due regard to this. Design unity, repetitive detailing and compositional harmony are essential characteristics of local distinctiveness and should be respected when alterations and extensions are being undertaken.

6.36. Principal elevations visible from the street are normally the most sensitive to change. Corner sites and those located in other prominent locations are likely to require greater attention in terms of design. As a rule of thumb, it is generally expected that all new extensions will be subservient to the host building. One way of achieving this is, for example, by stepping the extension back from existing building lines to create a clearer distinction between the form of the original building and the extension.

6.37. All extensions and alterations should be appropriately positioned, scaled and materially finished such that they relate sympathetically to the architectural character of the building and the wider area. In certain circumstances it may be more appropriate to design an extension using a sensitive yet contemporary design in order that the extension is clearly identifiable from the original building. In such cases the design and materials used should still be of the highest quality and demonstrate a strong design response relating to the host building.

6.38. Extensions and alterations or ancillary development such as new freestanding buildings and garages should have regard to scale, design and materials in relation not only to the property concerned, but also any predominant characteristics in the area, including site or garden size and building lines. The impact of any proposal on the street-scene and on neighbouring property must also be acceptable.

6.39. Where inappropriate development of residential gardens is proposed this will be resisted. In some circumstances their development may be acceptable subject to careful consideration and each case will be determined on its own merits. A range of issues, including the positioning, size and shape of the garden, impact on neighbouring dwellings, parking, refuse and storage provision, biodiversity, density, and the character of the area will all be taken into account.

(5)Policy P7 Alterations and Extensions

The council is in principle supportive of alterations and extensions where these can be achieved without causing harm to the character of the local area or would result in the over-intensification of use within the site.

The council will generally expect proposals for alterations and extensions to:

  1. Be designed to positively respond to the original architecture of the host building and other locally distinct forms (such as group characteristics);
  2. Respect the siting, scale, form, rhythm, pattern, proportions, and overall design and character of the host building, its curtilage and setting;
  3. Match or complement the existing materials and detailing of the site and or host building including fenestration design, materials and means of opening)
  4. Ensure the resultant building appears as an attractive and coherent whole.
  5. Retain boundary treatments (that fall under planning control) that contribute positively to the character of the street scene. Proposed boundary treatments must be of a style, quality, height and type appropriate to the context.
  6. Retain appropriate amounts of soft landscaping and trees;
  7. Propose roof lights (that fall under planning control) that are modest and consistent in size and positioned to align with each other and the fenestration of the host building;
  8. Make use of appropriate opportunities to integrate living (green) roofs and walls;
  9. Be designed appropriately in response to changes in site levels and the visual prominence of the site such as corner plots;
  10. Ensure proposals for ancillary buildings including garages are designed and positioned appropriately in relation to the plot and building size, the site context and street scene;
  11. Be subservient in design. Development which unacceptably dominates the host building will not be permitted. Subordination in all its forms, is particularly important in relation to heritage assets.

In addition to the above proposals for extensions should be consistent with the following:

  1. The height of the extension should normally be lower than the height of the original building and set back from the original front elevation.
  2. Extensions should normally be sited at least 1m from a shared boundary to prevent undesirable terracing. In certain locations it may be appropriate for this spacing to be less or considerably more in response to the existing character and density of the locality.
  3. Front extensions are unlikely to be acceptable if they are at odds with the prevailing architectural character or break the established building line.
  4. New dormers should be avoided on front roof pitches unless similar buildings in the immediate context already exhibit appropriate dormers.
  5. Dormers should be of a size and positioning that does not dominate the roof slope. Windowless dormers are generally not acceptable.
  6. On sensitive buildings such as heritage assets, where dormers are considered appropriate in principle, they should be modest in size and aligned with openings below.
  7. Extensions for use as annexes should be attached to the host building where possible and avoid the appearance and creation of a separate independent dwelling. As such an entrance and preferably one main facility will normally be expected to be shared with the main dwelling and must remain ancillary to the main dwelling at all times.

Materials and Detailing


6.40. All development should be built in materials that are durable, selected to reflect local distinctiveness, result in a high-quality aesthetic, minimise future maintenance burden and are neatly and robustly detailed for durability. The choice of materials and the resolution of construction details are vital to the visual appeal and longevity of development. It will be expected that materials are selected with care in order that they are suitable for their environments, such as exposed or coastal locations where greater durability will be necessary.

6.41. Selecting the right materials and detailing can greatly help new developments to fit harmoniously with their surroundings. Where the context and or site is particularly sensitive to change or the proposal is an extension to match the existing building the importance of material choice is likely to be even greater. Along with other factors this will likely require consideration to the following: matching texture, tone, size, finish, mortar colour, pointing and bonding of masonry. In circumstances where contemporary or innovative materials are proposed the same attention to detail will be expected to complement the existing material palette, achieve visual appeal and durability.

(1)6.42. Combined with materials the detailing of development affects how well they weather and the resulting visual appeal of the built-out proposal. Details of buildings are the individual components and how they are put together. Some of these are the result of deliberate design intention informing the appearance of a development, including doors, windows and their surrounds, porches, decorative features, edging details and ironmongery. All of these make an important contribution to the overall appearance of the development.

6.43. Other details whilst also impacting the appearance of development are functional such as lighting, flues, ventilation, plant and equipment, gutters, pipes and other rainwater details. It will be expected that details that service the building or development are integrated and located in as visually inconspicuous locations as possible. Unless designed to positively contribute to the appearance of a building these should not be placed on principal elevations where this is avoidable or in sensitive locations.

6.44. Flint walls are characteristic in many parts of the district. Replicating the detailing of traditional flint work requires skill and can be time intensive. The use of flint blocks is commonly proposed as an alternative solution particularly for new build applications. The use of flint blocks is unlikely to be appropriate where development is seeking to match existing flint work as it often lacks the irregularity of traditional workmanship. On other proposals such as new buildings flint blocks will only be considered acceptable where it is demonstrated through the building of a sample panel that the use of flint blocks will not be legible in the completed wall. Once approved the approach must be replicated across the built-out proposal. Poorly detailed flint blocks result in a compromised appearance to the finished building and will therefore be resisted.

6.45. Owing to its poor performance and resulting appearance, render finishes and detailing on new development (painted or unpainted) will generally be discouraged. Without regular maintenance render surfaces become dirty and unattractive placing a maintenance burden on property owners and or leading to stained buildings which detract from their context. Where render is characteristic of a host building proposed for extension or of boundary wall treatments the use of render may be considered acceptable subject to consideration of the individual site and local context.

(1)6.46. The use of timber cladding has become increasingly popular. When detailed and specified successfully this can result in a high-quality appearance. However, care must be taken to specify the right species of cladding for the context, level of exposure and maintenance access. Without appropriate consideration timber cladding specified or detailed poorly, such as in positions exposed to pollution or on elevations with excessive shade can result in unsightly staining and inconsistent weathering. Artificial timber effect cladding made from plastic or cement board does not replicate the visual qualities or tones of natural timber often appearing too stark and crisp. This appearance does not mellow or tone into its setting through weathering and therefore is unlikely to be supported, particularly in large amounts or within sensitive contexts.

6.47. To ensure that the quality of approved development is not materially diminished between permission and completion, where appropriate, the council will use planning conditions to prevent incremental changes being made to approved plans that would impact negatively on the design and quality of the scheme proposed.

(6)Policy P8 Materials and Detailing

The council will generally expect proposals for materials and detailing to:

  1. Respect and complement local distinctiveness, character, texture and colour of materials locally characteristic to the area;
  2. Use materials that are low maintenance, specified appropriately for their level of exposure, weather favourably and mellow with age and have long-term durability to limit waste and maintenance burden;
  3. Ensure where new, innovative or contemporary materials are proposed these are of high quality, well detailed and appropriate to their context;
  4. Ensure junctions and the interfaces between different materials are well designed and discreetly located where these are not contributing positively to the appearance of the development;
  5. Ensure services, plant and equipment are placed sympathetically and where possible integrated into the overall design avoiding principal facades;
  6. Avoid the creation of uncharacteristic or overly elaborate detailing and avoid substituting integrated detailing for the use of stick-on ornamentation or features;
  7. Avoid the creation of a discordant appearance through proposing an overly varied material palette;
  8. Select materials that have low embodied energy, low environmental impacts, including re-use and recycling of materials;
  9. Avoid the use of fake timber effect cladding and imitation slate particularly in sensitive locations where it would be at odds with the context or character;
  10. Avoid the use of flint blocks as a substitute for traditional flint work unless it can be demonstrated that their use will not result in the blocks being readily legible once the development is completed;
  11. Avoid the use of upvc materials. The use of upvc will be discouraged given its environmental drawbacks in manufacture and poor recycling ability;
  12. Ensure fenestration design responds to local characteristics and host buildings avoiding the use of overly chunky frames. Attention must be given to the method of opening, materials, glazing type, glazing bar division and proportions of the frames.

Consistency must also be achieved with the following:

The council will resist value engineering approaches which dilute the design quality and integrity of approved schemes. Within housing developments of mixed tenure, materials and detailing of equal quality will be expected to ensure the tenure (regardless of ownership, shared ownership or rented) is not differentiated by external appearance.

Where the appearance and build quality of materials is particularly vital to the success of a development the provision of sample panels (for materials and workmanship) or materials samples for approval will be required. For important details such as but not limited to material junctions, windows and verge details construction detail drawings for approval will be required.

Historic Environment


(1)6.48. The outstanding cultural and historic environment within the Chichester plan area is a key component in the delivery of sustainable development, and is an asset that adds value to regeneration, business and tourism. A well maintained historic environment is a significant and irreplaceable stimulus to local economic growth. Managing change in the historic environment involves close working relationships between officers, residents, elected members, developers and local and national heritage organisations.

6.49. Chichester and the plan area have a rich and diverse historic environment, including locally distinct vernacular architecture, nationally significant archaeology and historic landscapes, including within the South Downs National Park.

6.50. Heritage assets include any valued component of the historic environment, be it a building, monument or place which is positively identified as having a degree of significance meriting consideration in the planning process. This can include listed buildings, conservation areas and other, non-designated heritage assets.

6.51. The district, including the South Downs National Park, has a dense and high-quality historic environment. It contains an exceptionally high number of heritage assets, both designated and non-designated, including over 200 scheduled monuments, over 3,200 listed buildings, 86 conservation areas, 17 registered parks and gardens and the Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. There are wide ranging and significant areas within the district which have been identified as having archaeological potential.

(1)6.52. There are a high number of non-designated heritage assets which comprise much-cherished local elements of the area ranging from historic street furniture to locally important historic buildings. They may be identified during the development management process or during conservation area character appraisals, emerging Neighbourhood Plans and where assessing potential urban and rural development sites.

(1)6.53. To sympathetically manage heritage assets in the development process there must be a clear understanding of the assets themselves, including their significance and setting. Applicants should take advantage of the council's flexible and detailed pre application advice service by making early and detailed pre-application submissions on proposals which affect heritage assets. This service can be instrumental in avoiding abortive and costly later works or alterations to proposals.

(1)6.54. The council will continue to maintain and make available the Historic Environment Record (HER) to help inform change and the conservation of the district's heritage assets. It is particularly valuable to prospective developers and the local authority development management function and will be used to inform the consideration of future development including potential conservation and enhancement measures.

6.55. The council will continue to make available conservation area appraisals and management plans, supplementary planning documents, guidance and other relevant sources of information.

6.56. Energy efficient improvements and the installation of micro-renewables affecting listed buildings and conservation areas are supported. The proposals should be consistent with relevant policies. There are a wide variety of measures to upgrade energy efficiency that are effective in historic buildings and applicants should follow a whole house approach as identified in Historic England guidance. Applicants are also advised to take advantage of the council's pre application advice service to gain a site-specific understanding of how a heritage asset can accommodate relevant and up to date environmental technologies including renewables.

(6)Policy P9 The Historic Environment

The local planning authority will grant planning permission or relevant consent for development proposals that conserve or enhance the historic environment of the plan area, based on the following approach:

  1. Designated heritage assets including listed buildings, structures and their settings, and Conservation Areas will be given the highest level of protection and should be conserved and enhanced in a manner appropriate to their significance.
  2. Non-designated heritage assets will be identified and conserved and enhanced in accordance with their significance and contribution to the historic environment.
  3. The local planning authority will take a pro-active stance in encouraging the use of appropriate methods in upgrading the energy and thermal performance of listed buildings and non-designated heritage assets; including where appropriate the use of renewable generation.
  4. The local planning authority will take a flexible approach to encouraging the reuse and renovation of any under utilised or vacant heritage assets that may be at risk by approving proposals that contribute positively to their conservation.
  5. Development proposals involving the demolition of listed buildings or substantial harm to a Conservation Area will not be permitted unless it can be demonstrated that the loss or harm achieves substantial public benefits.

Listed Buildings


6.57. Statutory listed buildings are designated heritage assets. Applicants will be required to provide a heritage statement for their proposals which explains in detail the significance of the building and the impact of the proposals on that significance. In accordance with the NPPF any proposed harm to significance will require a clear and convincing justification.

6.58. Chichester District Council's listed buildings stock is rich and varied. This variety is reflected in what makes them significant. Significant features can include (but are not limited to); historic characteristics such as floor plans, historic circulation patterns, a hierarchy of rooms reflecting historic uses, traditional timber and metalwork, the use of brick, stone, timber, slate and clay roof tiles. Interior features such as windows, glass, staircases, doors, joinery, chimney breasts and chimney pieces, lath and plaster/decorative plasterwork, floorboards, shelving, partitions and built-in cupboards all contribute to significance and should be identified and retained.

6.59. The council will support only the minimum amount of alteration necessary to secure the optimum viable use of a listed building. Where a building is already in its optimum viable use, alterations which diminish significance will be resisted.

6.60. New work should preserve significance, reinforce appropriate local characteristics and, where possible, secure enhancement of the listed building. High-quality craftsmanship will be required to ensure that appropriate detailing is achieved using acceptable materials. Poor quality modern materials and detailing are not considered acceptable for the replacement or reinstatement of historic fabric or features.

6.61. The historic environment has an important role to play in addressing climate change. The careful conservation and maintenance of historic buildings is an excellent example of sustainable development when compared to new build properties.

6.62. Historic buildings are by the very fact of their survival adaptable and suited to their environment. Through the use of traditional and increasingly advanced technological adaptations most can be made more energy efficient without harming their character. The local planning authority will consider how the use of renewable energy generation can be sited on and around a listed building without causing harm to its character.

6.63. Demolition of listed buildings should be exceptional. Curtilage listed features protected by the listing and contributing to the significance of the building can include boundary treatments, steps, paving and outbuildings such as stables and other associated agricultural buildings; their demolition will also normally be resisted.

(1)6.64. The conversion of a listed building to new uses can result in a significant impact on historic fabric and plan form in order to meet the necessary building regulations. Change-of-use proposals should be accompanied by full information on the impacts relating to any such issues including fire spread, floor loading, sound attenuation and servicing. Changes of use will not be permitted unless interventions of this nature can be sympathetically accommodated. Any resulting harm should be fully justified as necessary for delivering the optimum viable use for the building. In this respect it should be proved that other, less harmful uses are not viable.

6.65. Applications for works to statutory listed buildings should be accompanied by a Heritage Statement which covers the significance of the asset, describes the proposal, explains the need/justification for the proposal; and assesses the impact of the proposed changes on the significance of the listed asset. The level of detail should be proportionate to the extent and nature of the works proposed.

(5)Policy P10 Listed Buildings

Development affecting listed buildings will be supported where it:

  1. Would conserve and not harm the historic character, qualities and special interest of the building including its interior, curtilage and setting;
  2. Would not diminish its ability to remain viable in use in the long term; and
  3. Is justified and supported by an appropriately detailed Heritage Statement.

Total or substantial demolition of a listed building will only be permitted in wholly exceptional circumstances, and where it meets the following criteria:

  1. Clear and convincing evidence has been provided that viable alternative uses cannot be found and that some form of charitable or community ownership is not possible;
  2. The structural condition of the building has severely deteriorated, through no fault of the owner / applicant for which detailed and comprehensive evidence can be submitted.

The local planning authority will take a flexible approach in supporting alterations to listed buildings in order to mitigate the effects of climate change where such proposals do not have an adverse impact on the character and appearance of the building.

The local planning authority will support proposals for alternative uses for listed buildings which do not have an adverse impact on the character and appearance of the building and where the change will provide for the long-term conservation of the building.

Conservation Areas


6.66. Conservation areas and elements that contribute positively to their significance (character and appearance) are designated heritage assets. Applicants will be required to provide a heritage statement for their proposals which explains in detail the significance (character and appearance) of the conservation area affected by the proposals and the impact of the proposals on that significance. Proposals that will have a harmful impact will be required to meet the relevant tests set out in the NPPF.

6.67. Chichester's conservation area designations cover the most architecturally and historically significant places in the district and this can include high quality examples of relatively common types of built form including terraced housing, agricultural barns and cottages. Conservation areas generally contain high concentrations of statutory listed buildings and local heritage assets and are key contributors to local distinctiveness.

6.68. Designation of conservation areas takes into account more than just the character of individual buildings. The mix of uses, historic layout, characteristic materials and the scale and detailing of public space as well as street furniture, vistas, and the spaces between buildings. The location and appearance of trees, hedges, walls, railings and other characteristic features are important contributors to the character and appearance of conservation areas.

6.69. The use of non-traditional and environmentally unsustainable materials in traditional buildings such as concrete and PVCu can erode the character and appearance of Conservation Areas. The local planning authority will resist the use of such materials in Conservation Areas.

6.70. The council will periodically review its programme for conservation area appraisals to ensure they remain up to date and relevant, annually update the Historic England Heritage at Risk Register, and define locally important heritage assets. It will continue to prepare specific local guidance on the management of the historic environment and update existing guidance on working with heritage assets. These supplementary planning documents will add more detailed advice or guidance to supplement policies in the Local Plan and help support the submission of well informed applications.

(8)Policy P11 Conservation Areas

  1. Development proposals affecting conservation areas will be permitted where they preserve or enhance the character or appearance of conservation areas by:
    1. Sustaining the established, positive characteristics of the area in terms of the building line, siting, design, height, forms, materials, joinery, window detailing, boundary treatments and roof forms;
    2. Protecting the setting (including views into and out of the area).
  2. Development involving demolition in a conservation area will only be supported if:
    1. The structure proposed for demolition does not make a positive contribution to the character or appearance of the area;
    2. A suitable scheme for the reuse of the land forms part of the same application.

Non-designated heritage assets


6.71. Non-designated heritage assets can be identified by the local authority and include buildings, historic areas, street furniture, designed landscapes and archaeological remains. Applicants will be required to provide a heritage statement / archaeological assessment / site evaluation for their proposals that is commensurate with the significance of the asset and the likely impact of the works. Proposals that will have a harmful impact will be required to meet the relevant tests set out in the NPPF.

6.72. The council will seek to identify non-designated heritage assets through a variety of means including (but not restricted to): neighbourhood plans; conservation area appraisals; site allocations; and with the assistance of local groups and national amenity societies. However, the council may also identify non-designated heritage assets through the delivery of normal planning services such as planning applications. Where applications are received for assets subsequently identified in this manner this policy will apply.

6.73. Where appropriate the council will seek statutory designation to secure the protection of non-designated heritage assets.

6.74. The identification of non-designated heritage assets throughout the plan area will be subject to change over time as more assets are identified. Proposals affecting buildings and structures will be permitted where their architectural interest, historic interest, townscape value and rarity are sustained or enhanced in accordance with established conservation best practice.

6.75. Archaeological Priority Areas are considered non-designated heritage assets.

6.76. Local historic spaces and designed landscapes can contribute to the plan areas local distinctiveness and can be identified as non-designated heritage assets. Proposals affecting local spaces and landscapes will be permitted where their settings, openness, design integrity and features of interest are preserved or enhanced. The authentic reinstatement or modern reinterpretation of lost historic boundary enclosures and landscaping schemes is strongly encouraged.

(3)Policy P12 Non-Designated Heritage Assets

  1. The objectives of identifying non-designated heritage assets are to:
    1. Raise awareness of these assets and foster a greater appreciation of them;
    2. Sustain or enhance their significance, including their setting
  1. In order to be considered non-designated heritage assets, buildings, historic areas, street furniture and designed landscapes will be assessed against the following criteria:
    1. Buildings of high-quality traditional design, detailing and appearance which make good use of historic materials;
    2. Buildings which are good examples of vernacular or traditional types;
    3. Buildings which contribute towards their surroundings or street scene or have important local, historical or social associations.
  1. Applications for development which result in the loss of non-designated heritage assets will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that the building or structure cannot be beneficially reused. Replacement structures will have to make an equal or better contribution to their surroundings than the building they replaced. There may be situations where the public benefit from the proposed development outweighs any proposed harm.
  1. The council will require applicants for proposals which involve excavation or ground works on sites of archaeological potential to:
    1. Submit an archaeological assessment and evaluation of the site, including the impact of the proposed development;
    2. Preserve, protect, safeguard and enhance archaeological monuments, remains and their settings in development, and seek a public display and interpretation where appropriate;
    3. Undertake proper investigation and recording of archaeological remains as an integral part of a development programme, and publication and archiving of results to advance understanding.

Registered Parks and Gardens


6.77. Parks and gardens on the national register are designated heritage assets. Applicants will be required to provide a heritage statement for their proposals which explains in detail the significance of the landscape or its features, describes the proposal, explains the need/justification for the proposal; and assesses the impact of the proposals on that significance. Proposals that will have a harmful impact will be required to meet the relevant tests set out in the NPFF.

6.78. The plan area includes designated historic landscapes dating from the medieval period and including nationally significant parks such as that at Goodwood House. The special interest of all the designated landscapes lies in their layout, landscape and structures and they often contain additional heritage assets designated under their own merit. The character of their settings can also be important.

(5)Policy P13 Registered Parks and Gardens

Development proposals affecting parks and gardens on the national register will be supported where they:

  1. Sustain and enhance the significance of landscape and its features of interest (including structures);
  2. Take opportunities to restore original features or do not compromise future restoration opportunities;
  3. Promote greater accessibility;
  4. Preserve the setting (including views in and out); and
  5. Are justified and supported by appropriately detailed Heritage Statements.

Green Infrastructure


6.79. Green infrastructure (GI) is the multifunctional network of natural and semi-natural features in urban and rural areas. In the plan area, this includes: canals, watercourses and river corridors; disused railway lines, cycle paths and pedestrian links connecting people with nature; public rights of way and the England Coast Path; green spaces such as the Medmerry Compensatory Habitat, farmland, wetlands, woodlands and trees; coastal features, wildlife corridors and Chichester and Pagham Harbours. Green infrastructure also includes built environment features such green walls and green roofs, and therefore consideration of these features should be in conjunction with the council's design policies. GI assets extend well beyond the boundaries of the Chichester plan area and, in particular, there are close links to and within the South Downs National Park, which is a nationally significant GI asset.

6.80. GI features are capable of delivering a wide range of social, economic and environmental benefits for local communities. These include promoting health and well-being through providing opportunities for physical activity and active travel, retaining and promoting biodiversity, and for climate change resilience including reducing impact of extreme weather and microclimates, reducing flood risk and providing opportunities for carbon storage or water purification. The benefits of these spaces are recognised as extending beyond the plan area boundary.

6.81. Regard should also be had to Natural England's National Framework of Green Infrastructure Standards.

Local Green Space

(1)6.82. The NPPF includes the concept of Local Green Space designation. This is a discretionary designation and sites may be identified and included in either local or neighbourhood plans. The designation should only be used as defined by the criteria in the NPPF where the land is not extensive, is local in character and reasonably close to the community; and, where it is demonstrably special, for example because of its beauty, historic significance, recreational value (including as a playing field), tranquility or richness of its wildlife. Any areas which fall outside a neighbourhood plan area and where such designation is sought, will be considered by the subsequent Site Allocations DPD that will cover the remainder of the plan area. Policies for managing development within a Local Green Space should be consistent with those for Green Belts.

(16)Policy P14 Green Infrastructure

Proposals for new residential development (excluding householder applications and replacement dwellings) will be expected to contribute towards the provision of additional green infrastructure, and the protection and enhancement of existing green infrastructure.

The existing green infrastructure network must be considered at an early stage of the design process for all major development proposals. New green infrastructure is to be provided as part of new development on the Strategic Site Allocations. Masterplans should illustrate how the development incorporates the existing green infrastructure network, and any new green infrastructure.

Proposals must demonstrate that all the following criteria have been addressed:

  1. The proposals maintain or, where appropriate, incorporate improvements to the existing network of green infrastructure, or the restoration, enhancement or creation of additional provision areas;
  2. Where appropriate, the proposals create new green infrastructure which is appropriate to the type and context of the development proposal, is integrated into the development design and meets the needs of the communities within and beyond the site boundaries;
  3. The proposals contribute to improving the health and well-being of the local and wider community;
  4. The proposals maximise opportunities to link to cycling and walking routes, including multi-user routes;
  5. The proposals maximise opportunities to link to nature recovery networks;
  6. The proposals do not lead to the dissection of the linear network of cycle ways, public rights of way, bridleways and ecological corridors; and
  7. Where appropriate, the council will seek to secure by way of planning obligation or legal agreement provision for the future management and/or maintenance of green infrastructure.

Proposals for development that will otherwise harm the green infrastructure network will only be granted if they can incorporate measures that sufficiently mitigate its effects.

Open Space Sport and Recreation


(1)6.83. The Local Plan can assist in enhancing well-being and promoting healthy lifestyles by protecting, enhancing and providing new open space, sport and recreation (including indoor) facilities. Open space also forms a key component of a green infrastructure network (see Policy P14 Green Infrastructure) and therefore contributes to the area's biodiversity assets and efforts to address climate change. Sport makes a substantial contribution to the local economy, contributing significantly in terms of spending, economic activity (measured using gross value added) and employment.

6.84. Open space includes formal facilities such as parks, sports and recreation grounds, children's play areas, outdoor sports facilities, playing pitches, amenity spaces and allotments, and also more informal facilities such as natural green spaces, beaches, lakes, watercourses and recreational routes. Indoor sports facilities include swimming pools, leisure centres, fitness stations and sports facilities provided in community centres and schools, where public access may be restricted to certain times.

(1)6.85. The Chichester Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study including Indoor Sports Facilities and Playing Pitch Strategy 2018 proposes quantity, access and quality standards for different typologies in the plan area. When existing provision is compared against the recommended standards, the study identifies a justified additional need for allotments, amenity open space, play space, especially youth play space and parks, sport and recreation grounds. This study and future updates will be applied to assess future requirements for the Chichester Local Plan area.

6.86. The study recommends that levels of provision in new development are considered together with amenity open space. The aim would be to provide amenity and natural greenspaces which have both a recreational value and biodiversity value through native planting. There should be a move away from providing numerous small amenity grass areas, to providing fewer, larger amenity and natural spaces in new development. It recommends that sites which have significant nature conservation, historical or cultural value should be afforded protection, even if there is an identified surplus in quality, quantity or access in that local area.

6.87. Some areas have sufficient local provision for certain types of open space, although every area is deficient in some form of provision in terms of quantity, accessibility or quality. The study highlights the poor access to youth provision, with significant gaps in many of the settlements. Therefore, Policy P15 seeks to retain all open space typologies unless a better or at least equivalent replacement of an open space typology can be provided in terms of quantity, accessibility and quality.

6.88. Where a surplus of provision is identified against the standards set out in the Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study including Indoor Sports Facilities and Playing Pitch Strategy 2018 (or future update), proposals involving the loss of facilities will need to take into account the potential for the use of the land to help reduce shortfalls of other types of open space and the future open space and recreational needs arising from development. Policy P17 covers the loss of community halls.

6.89. New housing developments create an additional need for both open space and recreational facilities. Where access to existing local facilities or the quality of provision is inadequate, new housing developments will be expected to provide new or improved facilities in respect of allotments, amenity open space, play space including youth space, and parks, sport and recreation grounds and natural or semi-natural greenspace.

6.90. The provision of additional amenity and natural greenspace may be required as part of mitigation measures to protect against the potential disturbance to bird populations (see Policy NE7).

6.91. In accordance with the standards set out in the Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study including Indoor Sports Facilities and Playing Pitch Strategy 2018 (or future update), on-site provision for open space, sports and recreation facilities will be sought to meet the recreational needs generated by new housing development. All types of residential development where there is a net increase in 20 or more homes will be expected to contribute to the provision of facilities. The standards in the tables below exclude car parking and changing rooms, which should be provided in addition to the open space quantity standards. However, SuDS and landscape screens and buffers can potentially be provided within the open space if they are both functionally appropriate and form an integral part of the design of the type of open space being provided.

6.92. The study also recommends standards for certain indoor sports facilities including sports halls, swimming pools, synthetic pitches, and health and fitness stations. The Local Plan seeks to ensure that existing facilities are protected and where needed positive improvements are achieved.

6.93. Where facilities are to be provided on-site, the council will expect the developer to provide the land for the facility and either design and build the provision to the satisfaction of the council in compliance with the relevant national governing body guidance, Sport England Guidance or Play England Design for Play Guidance or make a financial contribution to the council so that it may arrange for the construction and development of the required facility. All housing types are expected to contribute, with the exception of housing for the active elderly, which is not expected to make provision for equipped play space.

(2)6.94. Depending on other competing priorities, provision under the thresholds in Table 6.1 may be provided off-site through alternative funding sources such as the Community Infrastructure Levy.

Table 6.1 showing the thresholds for on-site provision as described above.

Threshold requirement for providing on-site open space, sport & recreation facilities to be secured by S106

Type of provision

1-19 dwellings

20-49 dwellings

50-99 dwellings

100+ dwellings


Not required

Not required

Not required

Must be provided

Amenity and Natural Green Space

Not required

Must be provided

Must be provided

Must be provided

Parks, Sport and
Recreation Grounds (1)

Not required

Not required

Not required

Must be provided

Equipped Play Space (Children)

Not required

Not required

Must be provided

Must be provided

Equipped Play Space (Youth)

Not required

Not required

Not required

Must be provided

1. For sports pitches, facilities need to be provided according to the need identified in the most up to date Playing Pitch Strategy.

Table 6.2 shows the average household size, based on the 2011 census. This should be used for calculating the amount of on-site provision required by open space type. Over the plan period the council will update occupancy rates as appropriate with the latest available census data.

Table 6.2 – Average Household Size

Dwelling Size

Average Household Size (Census 2011)

1 Bedroom


2 Bedroom


3 Bedroom


4+ Bedroom


Table 6.3 shows the minimum open space quantity and access standards required by developments that meet the thresholds for providing on-site facilities set out in hectares per 1000 population generated. The standards in the tables below exclude car parking and changing rooms, which should be provided in addition to the open space quantity standards. Sports fields and pitches should be accompanied by the provision of small built facilities to accommodate toilets, showers and changing rooms, and associated parking and access commensurate with the scale of development proposed.

Table 6.3 – Minimum Open Space Quantity and Access Standards


Minimum quantity standards in hectares per 1000 population

Access standard
in metres or by straight line walk time


0.30 ha

600 metres or 12-13 minutes

Amenity and Natural Green Space (3)

1.0 ha

600 metres or 12-13 minutes

Parks and Recreation Grounds (1)

1.2 ha

600 metres or 12-13 minutes to local facilities, but by a 10 minute drive time for larger multifunctional facilities

Equipped Play Space (Children) (2)

0.05 ha

480 metres or 10 minutes

Equipped Play Space (Youth) (2)

0.05 ha

720 metres or 15 minutes

Total for new provision

2.6 ha per 1000 population

1. In addition to this standard, playing fields & pitches should be accompanied by small built facilities as a minimum to accommodate toilets, showers & changing rooms, parking and storage and associated parking and access commensurate with the scale of development proposed
2. Please note that this standard does not include any buffers, landscape design or informal play. However, equipped play space should be provided in accordance with Play England's 'Design for Play' Guidance which recommends designed landscape and buffers around play equipment which will be required in addition to the standard above.

3. SuDS and landscape screens and buffers can be potentially provided within the open space if they are both functionally appropriate and form an integral part of the design of the type of open space being provided.

Where new indoor sports facilities are required the following quantity and access standards will apply:

Table 6.4 shows the built sport and recreation facilities quantity and access standards required by developments that meet the thresholds for providing on-site facilities set out in hectares per 1000 population generated.              

Table 6.4 – Built Sport and Recreation Facilities Quantity and Access Standards

Indoor Facility

Quantity Standard
per 1000 population

Access Standard
Drive-time or walking in urban areas

Swimming Pools - Based on 4 lane x 25m pool unit

10.05 sqm; or 0.042 pools

Within 15 to 20 minutes

Sports Halls - Based on 4 x badminton court hall unit

0.26 courts; or 0.065 halls

Within 15 to 20 minutes

Health & Fitness - Based on individual stations (pay and play access)

5 stations, subject to viability

Within 20 minutes

Small community halls

1 venue for each settlement of 500 people.
1 further venue for each
additional 2,500 people but with flexibility of interpretation.

A small community hall will be required to provide:

A main hall to be used for a variety of recreation and social activities, of at least 18m x 10m; a small meeting/committee room; kitchen; storage; toilets; provision for disabled access and use; car parking.

Overall a total net floor space of 300 sqm will be used as a minimum guide for the building.

The standard will be applied flexibly in liaison with the council to best meet local circumstances. The aim should not be (for example) to create a proliferation of small community venues in areas of growth where fewer larger venues would be more appropriate.

Contributions arising from this standard may also be used towards the enlargement/improvement of existing venues (whether on-site or nearby off-site) where appropriate.

600 metres or 15 minutes
straight line walk time, but
15 minutes drive-time might be acceptable in rural areas.

6.95. Further details are set out in the Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study including Indoor Sports Facilities and Playing Pitch Strategy 2018. The council will use appropriate planning obligations to secure the provision and maintenance of open space, sport and recreation facilities.

6.96. Area based policies and allocations in this Local Plan identify locations where new and enhanced open space, sport and recreation facilities will be sought in association with strategic development. Where appropriate, other specific allocations and enhancements will be identified in the relevant Neighbourhood Plans, Site Allocation DPD, supplementary planning document(s) and the Green Infrastructure Strategy.

6.97. Recreational activities which are likely to create noise disturbance to the surrounding environment should demonstrate that activities would not adversely impact on the tranquillity and enjoyment of local residents, or other users of the coast and countryside.

(14)Policy P15 Open Space, Sport and Recreation

Residential development proposals should retain, enhance, improve access and increase the quantity and quality of public open space, playing fields, sport and recreation facilities (including indoor facilities) and provide improved links to the green infrastructure network and existing rights of way.

New residential development (excluding replacement dwellings) in accordance with the development thresholds set out in Table 6.1 will be required to contribute towards:

  1. The on-site provision of new open space, sports and recreation facilities (including indoor facilities);
  2. Improving the quality and accessibility of existing open space or indoor facilities.

New or improved facilities should be provided in accordance with the quantity and access standards as set out in Tables 6.3 and 6.4using the household size multiplier in Table6.2. Provision will be secured by way of condition or legal agreement.

Development resulting in the loss of existing open space, playing fields, sports and recreation buildings and land must satisfy the following criteria:

  1. They are replaced by accessible and appropriately located open space, sports and recreation facilities that are of better or at least equivalent quantity and quality.
  2. Where the Chichester Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study including Indoor Sports Facilities and Playing Pitch Strategy (or latest update) identifies a surplus in a typology, the future needs and potential to meet shortfalls in other types of open space, sports and recreation provision in the local area need to be taken into account;
  3. There are no adverse impacts on biodiversity, heritage assets or the integrity of the green infrastructure network.

Health and Well-being


6.98. Health and well-being are key issues for the plan area. The NPPF recognises that supporting the health, social and cultural well-being for all sections of the community is fundamental to the social role of planning in delivering sustainable development, while taking into account and supporting the delivery of local strategies. The planning process can influence the provision of new and improved facilities and opportunities to encourage healthy choices and active lifestyles, when creating new places and new development. Policies in the Local Plan enable and support healthy lifestyles for example, by including the provision of safe and accessible green infrastructure, sports facilities, local shops, and housing allocations which encourage walking and cycling.

6.99. In planning for the health and well-being of Chichester, it is necessary to understand and address the specific issues affecting Chichester District and the plan area. The WSCC Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) sets out the health and well-being issues within Chichester District as a whole, that include an older age profile compared with England, childhood obesity, physical inactivity, inequalities resulting from the gap between life expectancy of the people in the most deprived areas compared with the least deprived increasing in recent years.

Planning for Health and Well-being

6.100. Addressing all health and well-being issues requires the coordinated efforts of a number of agencies, councils and voluntary and community organisations involved in health and well-being professions. The council will work with partner organisations and health care commissioners to support the three priorities of the West Sussex Joint Health and Well-being Strategy: Start Well, Live Well, Age Well. The council will work with these partner groups to identify requirements for healthcare facilities and help facilitate delivery, where required by the priorities of West Sussex County Council and relevant NHS healthcare providers. Working with providers of other social and community infrastructure, the council will also support the delivery of appropriate facilities, to meet local needs, reflecting the spatial distribution of need and the importance of accessibility and public transport provision.

6.101. Development should contribute to building healthy communities through the creation of an inclusive built and natural environment. Inclusive design means providing for all people regardless of age or ability. Healthy communities are ones which meet the needs of children and young people to develop, as well as being adaptable to the needs of an increasingly elderly population and those with dementia and other sensory or mobility impairments.

(1)6.102. Policy P16 seeks to ensure that development considers local issues relating to health and well-being at an early stage in the planning process in order to positively improve outcomes for residents. The council will support proposals that seek to improve health and well-being, tackle inequalities, and prevent ill health for those living, working and visiting the plan area. However, health and well-being is not a standalone policy, it is influenced by a number of themes, including transport, open space, green infrastructure, housing, employment and environmental quality, while supporting biodiversity and efforts to address climate change.

6.103. Development will be expected to address the characteristics and demographic structure of Chichester and use local needs data held within the WSCC JSNA to provide evidence to support the needs of the Local Plan area. Development will also take account of health and well-being outcomes by making reference to the WSCC Creating Healthy and Sustainable Places document.

Health Impact Assessments

(1)6.104. The effect that planning policies and proposals may have on the health of a community can be tested through an independent Health Impact Assessment (HIA). This aims to ensure that any adverse impacts are reduced and positive impacts are maximised for all sections of the community. The WSCC 'Creating Healthy and Sustainable Places' document contains guidance and information to place makers with regards to the preparation and use of HIAs.

(11)Policy P16 Health and Well-being

Proposals for new development are expected to contribute towards strong, vibrant and healthy communities. Measures that help achieve healthier communities and promote health equity by supporting health, social and cultural well-being, must be incorporated into proposals for new development.

Development proposals will integrate public health principles and planning to help reduce health inequalities by:

  1. For new housing, the provision of land or financial contributions from new development, where appropriate and viable, towards new or enhanced healthcare facilities where new housing results in a shortfall or worsening of provision; For new housing developments, the provision of land will be secured via S106 agreements. CIL contributions will be used to fund improvements to healthcare facilities as set in the council's Infrastructure Business Plan (IBP)
  2. Safeguarding and encouraging the provision of allotments and garden plots within developments and supporting opportunities for small-scale agriculture and farmers markets to provide access to healthy, affordable locally produced food options.
  3. Promoting improvements to enable healthy lifestyles and developing a network of cycling and pedestrian routes as part of an integrated, multifunctional green infrastructure network; linking key settlements and service centres and enabling the community to improve their health by engaging in active travel, in accordance with Policy P14 (Green Infrastructure) and Policy T3 (Active Travel - Walking and Cycling).
  4. Ensuring proposals demonstrate how they safely and conveniently connect to existing and future routes as set out in the most up to date council and WSCC Active Travel Strategies, to enable cycling and walking.
  5. Demonstrating how developments provide high-quality open spaces and opportunities for sport and physical activity to comply with Policy P15 (Open Space, Sport and Recreation) making reference to Sport England's 'Active Design' guidance.
  6. Development proposals for over 50 dwellings, along with development proposals that may have an impact on health will require submission of a Health Impact Assessment.

Local and Community Facilities


6.105. Proposals for new and improved community facilities, public services, leisure and cultural uses that result in improvements to meet the needs of communities will be supported. Facilities will be required to be easily accessible to all sectors of the community and, in rural areas where public transport may be poor, support will be given to innovative schemes that seek to improve delivery of local services.

6.106. The provision, maintenance or improvement of facilities and services, required as a result of new development will be secured through developer contributions either through S106 or the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) mechanisms.

(5)Policy P17 New and Existing Local and Community Facilities including Local Shops

Planning permission will be granted for new or improved community facilities, where all of the following criteria are met:

  1. The facility is well located for the community it serves;
  2. The facility is accessible and inclusive to the local communities it serves;
  3. The facility is easy to reach on foot, by cycle and by public transport;
  4. There will be no adverse effects on the amenity of the surrounding area, including through the effects of any traffic generated by the proposal;
  5. Appropriate consideration has been given to the shared use, re-use and/ or redevelopment of existing buildings in the host community to expand or diversify the level of service;
  6. The proposal is supported by a robust proportionate business plan and governance arrangements, including any funding arrangement, to ensure the facility is financially sustainable in the longer term. This information will be prepared and funded by the applicant.

Development proposals which result in the loss of, or have an unacceptable adverse impact on, existing community facilities or land/premises last used for community facilities, public services, leisure and cultural uses, will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that all the following criteria have been addressed:

  1. There is no longer a demand for the facility within the local area and that the premises or land have been marketed as set out in AppendixC for a reasonable period of time; or
  2. Alternative community facilities are provided that are accessible, inclusive and available, and of an equivalent or better quality to those lost, without causing unreasonable reduction or shortfall in the local service provision;
  3. For commercially run community facilities, evidence is provided of a robust marketing campaign as specified in Appendix C that clearly demonstrates there is no market demand for the existing use or an alternative community use; and
  4. For community or publicly-owned or managed facilities, it can be robustly demonstrated there is no longer a need for the existing facility, or an equivalent community use.
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