New planning rules put more emphasis on housing numbers.
The government has produced a new version of its National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). When the first version came out in 2012 much was made of the way it simplified hundreds of pages of planning guidance into a 59-page document.
The 2018 revised Framework sees the number of pages creep up to 73, with the main emphasis in the update being on using the planning process to increase the quantity of housing, with a target of 300,000 dwellings per year in England.
Changes which may turn out to be significant for Wiltshire include:
A requirement for 10% of new housing allocations to be on sites of less than one hectare.
A change to the definition of affordable housing to include 'affordable home ownership'.
A new category of 'entry level' homes is introduced, which could be built on land not normally suitable for housing.
New rules will make it easier for developers to get permissions by establishing that the council isn't allocating sites to keep up with the required pace of construction.
Policies which haven't significantly changed include:
Preference for use of brownfield land, with high density developments where appropriate.
Protection of Green Belt land.
Continuation of the government's position of being in favour of renewable energy in theory, but not necessarily in practice.
The full document can be accessed here.