Issue - decisions
Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment
The Cabinet Member for Economy presented the report of the Strategic Director for Regeneration and Environment, which advised that The Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment for Merseyside and West Lancashire had been commissioned to find evidence of the need for specialist accommodation. The Assessment indicated that Wirral had a need for six permanent and four transit pitches for Gypsies and Travellers in the short term (2013/2014 – 2018/2019) with a further two permanent pitches over the subsequent period to 2032/2033. It did not identify a need for Travelling Showpeople yards in Wirral.
The report highlighted the findings of the study and addressed in detail the planning implications and the need to ensure the robustness of the Local Plan, which was required to identify sufficient land to provide for traveller accommodation based upon objectively assessed needs. He commented that a number of local authorities that had failed to do so had had their Local Plans found unsound, which had led to planning decisions being overturned at appeal. It was therefore essential that the Council should now take steps to identify land for traveller accommodation based on the findings of the Assessment.
(1) That it be recommended to Council that the findings of the Merseyside and West Lancashire Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment are used to inform the content of the Council’s emerging Core Strategy Local Plan and subsequent site-specific Local Plan.
(2) That it be recommended to Council that the Merseyside and West Lancashire Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment be approved as a material consideration for use by Planning Committee in the determination of planning applications.
(3) That a further report be submitted to Cabinet when appropriate sites have been identified.