Review of the Chelmsford Local Plan

The Council’s Local Plan was adopted in 2020 and it guides growth and development across Chelmsford City Council’s area to 2036.
We need to review the plan at least every five years to ensure that it remains up to date and continues to meet our needs for development growth to 2041. This includes new homes, employment opportunities and facilities for local people such new schools, healthcare provision and upgraded transport infrastructure.

We are currently at the Preferred Options stage in the plan review process, with the plan due to be adopted in 2025/26. Many people and organisations commented on the first Issues and Options stage consultation in 2022. All the responses have been carefully considered and used to progress the Preferred Options alongside an updated plan evidence base, national planning policy, new local priorities and monitoring data.
The consultation on the Preferred Options documents runs for a period of six weeks from 10am on Wednesday 8 May 2024 to 4pm on Wednesday 19 June 2024. Communities are encouraged to get involved at

This consultation is the second of three formal stages in the preparation of the review of the adopted Chelmsford Local Plan, and a further opportunity for residents, businesses, developers, and other interested parties to get involved. We are consulting on two documents: The Preferred Options Consultation Document and the Integrated Impact Assessment.

Preferred Options Consultation Document

The Preferred Options document is a full draft local plan. It includes updated and new Strategic Priorities, updated and new site allocations for new homes and employment, and policies that will be used to decide planning applications. The aim is to get the right type of development in the right places to meet the growing needs of local people and businesses, while protecting our environment. We are inviting comments on the plan to ensure that it is fit for purpose to meets local needs. We are not reopening any debates about the principle of already adopted allocated sites.

The Preferred Options plan follows the approach in the adopted Local Plan by continuing to focus new housing and employment growth to the most sustainable locations in three Growth Areas. The existing site allocations in the adopted plan which are not yet built are carried forward. Many of these sites are now coming forward, with masterplans being approved and planning applications decided or in progress. Some sites are being developed now. We are not considering growth in the Green Belt.

Integrated Impact Assessment (IIA)

The adopted Local Plan was developed alongside a comprehensive Sustainability Appraisal (SA) and Habitats Regulations Appraisal (HRA) process. For this review process other aspects of sustainable development are being considered in an Integrated Impact Assessment (IIA).

The IIA assesses the Preferred Options Local Plan against a range of social, environmental, health and economic indicators and helps to identify all the likely significant effects. It advises on ways in which any adverse effects could be avoided, reduced or mitigated or how any positive effects could be maximised. This helps to ensure that the emerging policies, plans and allocations in the Local Plan are promoting sustainable development.

Broomfield and Danbury Neighbourhood Plans Regulation 16 Consultations

We are also consulting on two Neighbourhood Plans. These have been developed by Broomfield and Danbury Parish Councils, and cover a wide range of issues such as landscape, transport, recreation, heritage, building design, and business. When they are adopted, both Neighbourhood Plans will become part of the Local Plan and will be used for planning decision making. Find out more at: and

Where to view the documents and how to make representations:
View and comment online
You can view and comment on the consultation documents on the City Council’s Consultation Portal at: This is our preferred method to comment.

If you have not used this system before or have any difficulties logging in, please see our guidance notes at: or call us on (01245) 606330.

View in person
Paper copies can be viewed at the City Council Customer Service Centre, Civic Centre, Duke Street, Chelmsford, CM1 1JE Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm (Please note we are closed on bank holidays).

Comment via email
Comments may be submitted by email:
Please include your name and postal address in your message.

A specially designed response form can be downloaded at or made available on request by telephoning (01245) 606330 or emailing

Paper comments
You can submit your comments by post or deliver them in person in the following ways:

Post: Spatial Planning Services, Chelmsford City Council, Civic Centre, Duke Street, Chelmsford, CM1 1JE

By hand: Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm – Customer Service Centre, Civic Centre, Duke Street, Chelmsford, CM1 1JE (outside of these hours you can use the post box outside the Customer Service Centre).

If you do not have access to a computer, you can request paper copies. A charge will be made to cover printing and postage costs.

If you have difficulties making representations by e-mail or post due to a disability, please call us (01245) 606330.

How to find out more

We will be hosting an online virtual exhibition for the Local Plan Preferred Options Consultation as well as having in-person exhibitions at the Council Offices. Here you can view our exhibition boards which contain a summary of the consultation (please note both forms of exhibition will have the same information available).

A Local Plan Virtual exhibition will be available to view via

Local Plan in-person exhibitions

Drop in exhibitions will take place at the Civic Centre, where you will be able to speak to a representative of the Council. There is no booking required to attend these exhibitions, which will take place at the Chelmsford City Council Chamber, accessed via Customer Service Centre, Civic Centre, Duke Street, Chelmsford, CM1 1JE on the following dates and times:

Thursday 16 May 2024, 6pm to 8pm

Friday 17 May 2024, 1pm to 3pm

Saturday 18 May 2024, 10am to 12noon

Thursday 13 June 2024, 6pm to 8pm

Friday 14 June 2024, 1pm to 3pm
• Saturday 15 June 2024, 10am to 12noon (with British Sign Language interpreter available on this date).
Further Local Plan exhibitions will be on display as follows. These will not be staffed.

Monday 20 May to Friday 24 May, 7am to 6.30pm at High Chelmer Shopping Centre, 15a Exchange Way, Chelmsford, CM1 1XB

Thursday 30 May, Friday 31 May, Monday 3 June to Friday 7 June, Monday 10 June and Tuesday 11 June, 9am to 4pm, South Woodham Town Council, Champions Manor Hall, Hullbridge Road, SWF.

Local Plan Website
Please visit our website for further information on the consultation and the Local Plan review process.

Please note that any representations must be received by the Council no later than 4pm on Wednesday 19 June 2024. We are unable accept anonymous representations and any comments received after the closing date cannot be accepted.