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Planning Services consultations

Planning Services (Development Planning and Development Management) routinely undertakes consultation on matters related to the development plan, planning policy, planning guidance etc.

Typically, these projects seek to engage the involvement of individual members of the public, representatives of community councils and other key public and private sector agencies whereby resources, statutory powers and expertise can be brought together in pursuit of common objectives.

You can view all consultations originated by Planning Services by clicking on the appropriate links below:

Open Consultations

Planning Guidance : Mobile Snack Bars

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 20 June 2019 to consult on new Planning Guidance (PG) relating to the location and operation of mobile snack bars in West Lothian.

Previous Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) dating from 1998 on the subject of mobile snack bars supported the West Lothian Local Plan (now superseded) but guidance now requires to be replaced as the new West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP) was adopted in September 2018.

Mobile snack bars are generally to be found around areas such as industrial estates and on main transport corridors. They council recognises that they provide a useful service to people on the move who tend not to be in town centres where hot food and café outlets are generally located. However, if not properly managed, mobile snack bars can cause issues relating to visual impact including associated signage, road safety and litter.

Planning Guidance (PG) is produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice.

In this instance, it provides an up to date guidance on matters to be taken into account by prospective operators when submitting a planning application for mobile snack bars.

Comments on the Planning Guidance are invited by 5 pm on Friday 18 October 2019. Please email responses to Email: Development Planning general enquiries

Planning Guidance : Areas of Built Heritage and Townscape Value - The Shale Miners Rows

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 20 June 2019 to consult on new Planning Guidance (PG) relating to planning controls over alterations and extensions to properties identified in the West Lothian Local Development Plan 2019 as 'Areas of Built Heritage and Townscape Value' and in particular the former shale miners rows at:

  • Beresford Rise, Dedridge, Livingston;

  • Oakbank Cottages, near West Calder;

  • Roman Camp Cottages by Broxburn;

  • South Village, Pumpherston and

  • Abercorn / Midhope Rows at Winchburgh

Previous Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) dating from 1994 on this subject supported the West Lothian Local Plan (now superseded) but guidance now requires to be replaced as the new West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP) was adopted in September 2018.

One of the most distinctive features of West Lothian heritage is the survival, largely intact, of several groups of houses built specifically for oil shale workers and known as "the rows". The council has recognised that there is merit it retaining a protective designation relative to the former shale miners rows at the locations identified above and policy ENV 27 of the LDP defines them as 'Areas of Built Heritage and Townscape Value'.

This does not however have the same status as conservation areas, and significantly, does not remove the 'permitted development rights' ordinarily available to householders to make minor alterations or modestly extend their property. However, when considering alterations and extensions are of a nature that do require planning permission the council will be particularly mindful of the need to maintain the architectural character and historic significance of the property and will seek to resist unsympathetic alterations.

Planning Guidance (PG) is produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice.

In this instance, it explains what is expected in terms of good design and identifies the matters to be taken into account by prospective developers when submitting a planning application to alter or extend a property in these locations. The PG also provides examples of good practice and sets out recommended design and finishing materials schedules.

Comments on the Planning Guidance are invited by 5 pm on Friday 18 October 2019. Please email responses to Email: Development Planning general enquiries

Planning Guidance : Shopfronts and advertisements in Broxburn and Uphall, Linlithgow, Kirknewton, Livingston Village, Mid Calder and Torphichen Conservation Areas

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 20 June 2019 to consult on new Planning Guidance (PG) relating to works to alter or replace shopfronts and advertisements in the conservation areas of Broxburn and Uphall, Linlithgow, Kirknewton, Livingston Village, Mid Calder and Torphichen.

The council recognises that the retail industry requires adaptability and flexibility in shopfront design in order to respond to the rapidly changing market and consumer pressures. However the visual quality of historic townscape and village centres and the architectural integrity of individual buildings and groups of buildings, especially within designated conservation areas, can be adversely affected by poor shopfront design and inappropriate advertisements and it is important that alterations, restoration and replacement are carried out sympathetically in order to protect the character of an area.

This illustrated guidance is intended to advise retailers, commercial operators and their agents what is expected in terms of good design when proposing to alter or replace shopfronts (and any associated advertising) within conservation areas and by following the guidance, applicants should be better able to achieve solutions more appropriate to the historic context of the property and which are more likely to secure approval.

Comments on the Planning Guidance are invited by 5 pm on Friday 18 October 2019. Please email responses to Email: Development Planning general enquires

How to comment on open consultations

While it is not uncommon for invitations to participate in a consultation to be targeted to specific groups or individuals with a particular interest or involvement in the subject matter, this does not preclude third parties from participating, providing their responses are relevant, satisfy any criteria specific to the consultation and are submitted timeously. 

If you would like to comment on any of the open consultations then please email us the topic "Open Consultation" to request participation in the consultation exercise, remembering to provide your contact details (i.e., name / email address / postal address and daytime telephone number). We will then register your interest, provide you with details of the consultation and send a copy of the Privacy Notice which we are legally obliged to provide to you.

 

Closed Consultations

Supplementary Guidance : Minerals

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 20 June 2019 to consult on new Supplementary Guidance regulating minerals development in West Lothian (including restoration bonds).

Previous Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) on the subject of minerals supported the West Lothian Local Plan (now superceded) but guidance now requires to be replaced as the new West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP) was adopted in September 2018.

Minerals make an important contribution to the economy, providing materials for construction, energy supply and other uses and supporting employment. Minerals may be required as construction materials to support diversification of the energy mix and Planning authorities are required to safeguard mineral resources and facilitate their responsible use.

Given that West Lothian contains minerals resources such as coal, silica sand and secondary aggregate in the form of discarded oil shale in bings which provide an economic resource it is important that the minerals guidance for operators remains up-to-date to respond to proposals for their extraction and after-care of sites.

Supplementary Guidance (SG) is produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice.

Policy 4 of the Strategic Development Plan (SDP1) for Edinburgh and South East Scotland provides the strategic policy context and supports the references to minerals development in the LDP, specifically policies MRW 1 - MRW 4.

Once approved it is intended that the SG will form part of the statutory supplementary guidance supporting the LDP.

Supplementary Guidance : Developer Contributions Towards Cemetery Provision in West Lothian

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 20 June 2019 to consult on new Supplementary Guidance regulating developer contributions towards cemetery provision in West Lothian.

Previous Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) on the subject of developer contributions towards cemetery provision in West Lothian supported the West Lothian Local Plan (now superceded) but guidance now requires to be replaced as the new West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP) was adopted in September 2018.

Supplementary Guidance (SG) is produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice. In this instance, developer contributions will assist the council in funding new cemetery provision arising from the expanding population generated by the scale of residential development planned over the LDP plan period and beyond.

The planning system allows, and indeed expects developers to mitigate the impact of their development and to pay for, or contribute towards improvements to infrastructure that arises as a direct consequence of the development, or from the cumulative impact of the development and which would not otherwise be needed.

Policy 9 (Infrastructure) of the Strategic Development Plan (SDP1) for Edinburgh and South East Scotland provides the strategic policy context for the securing of developer contributions towards infrastructure provision and Policy INF 1 (Infrastructure Provision and Developer Obligations) provides the LDP context.

This new SG seeks to quantify the contributions based on the LDP policy requirements.

Once approved it is intended that the SG will form part of the statutory supplementary guidance supporting the LDP.

 

Supplementary Guidance : Developer Contributions Towards Public Art

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 2 April 2019 to consult on new Public Art Supplementary Guidance.

Previous Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) on the subject of Public Art supported the West Lothian Local Plan (now superceded), but guidance now requires to be replaced as the new West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP) was adopted in September 2018.

Supplementary Guidance (SG) is produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice. Public art can increase awareness of the heritage of an area and the environment and can stimulate a sense of identity and local pride in new and existing communities.

Policy ENV 4 of the West Lothian Local Development Plan advises that developers of major residential, retail and public buildings will be required to fund or contribute to the cost of the works of art appropriate to the setting and scale of their surrounding area. This new SG seeks to quantify those contributions based on the LDP policy requirements.

Once approved, it is intended that the SG will form part of the statutory supplementary guidance supporting the LDP.

Supplementary Guidance : Planning and Education

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 2 April 2019 to consult on new Planning and Education Supplementary Guidance.

The previous Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) on this subject supported the adopted West Lothian Local Plan 2009 (now superceded) but is required to be replaced as the new West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP) was adopted in September 2018.

Supplementary Guidance (SG) is produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice. 

The West Lothian Local Development Plan identifies the circumstances in which the council will seek developer contributions for Education Infrastructure in policy INF1. This Supplementary Guidance seeks to quantify those contributions based on the LDP policy requirements. 

This new SG has had regard to and is compliant with all relevant national planning policies which are set out in the Strategic Development Plan and the policies of the new LDP in relation to Planning and Education. Once approved it is intended that it will form part of the statutory supplementary guidance supporting the LDP

Comments on the Supplementary Guidance are invited by 5 pm on Friday 5 July 2019. Please email responses to Email: Development Planning general queries

 

Tree Preservation Order (No.1) 2019 : Columbia Avenue, Livingston

The council (as planning authority) made the following Tree Preservation Order (TPO) on 8 May 2019.

Tree Preservation Order (No.1) 2019 : Columbia Avenue, Livingston

The TPO Map shows the trees identified for protected status which became enforceable on 8 May 2019.

The provisions of this legal order gives protected status to the trees indicated within the red lines on the TPO Map.

For further information about this TPO please refer to the accompanying Site Notice.

You can find additional information about the effects of a legal order on the Tree and Woodland Protection web page Tree and Woodland Protection

 

Uphall Conservation Area

Uphall Conservation Area was designated in 1976 and is centred on the historic core of West Main Street, East Main Street and Ecclesmachan Road. West Lothian Council are proposing to change the boundary of the conservation area to focus on these historic streets.

The conservation area is an important factor in protecting Uphall's historic environment and heritage. The proposed changes to the Uphall Conservation Area will affect the areas included and removed from the conservation area.

It is important that the council gauges the views of the residents of Uphall in order to determine whether or not it should go ahead with the proposed changes. 

Public Survey

A public engagement survey has been sent to all effected householders and is also available online:

Map of Proposed Area Boundary (click to enlarge)

Uphall Conservation Displays a larger version of this image in a new browser window
Uphall Conservation

 List of addresses, which would be excluded if the proposed boundary were adopted

STREETNUMBERSPOSTCODE
Alexander Street2 - 12 (even), 26 - 36, Rosemont, 36A, 38 - 46 (even), 50, 54 - 62, 64EH52 5DB
East Main Street7 - 57 (odd), 58, 60, 63, 63A, 69/71, 73, 121EH52 5HZ
Ecclesmachan Road32 - 39EH52 6DB, EH52 6JB, EH52 6DA
Glebe Place1 - 6EH52 6EB
Howieson Green14 - 17EH52 6BW
Manse Park1 - 5EH52 6NX
West Main Street1 - 30, 37a - d, 39a, 39b, 70EH52 5DP
Kennedie Park1 - 20EH53 0RG
South Middleton50EH52 5GB
Wyndford Avenue1, 9, 11EH52 6DH

List of addresses, which would be included if the proposed boundary were adopted

STREETNUMBERSPOSTCODE
Forkneuk Road4, 6EH52 6BL
Millbank Place1 - 19, 23, 27EH52 5DU

Advice for Owners in Conservation Areas 

The character of CAs can be compromised over time by numerous small alterations leading to a loss of historic character. Understanding the features which make an area characterful is important to achieving sympathetic maintenance and restoration. The Uphall Conservation Area 2018 leaflet provides advice to owners living within the conservation area.

Enforcement Charter

Planning legislation gives local authorities enforcement powers to deal with a range of unauthorised land use activities. These generally involve the failure to obtain planning consent in advance of carrying out works or changes of use on land or to property, or failure to comply with a condition of a planning consent. However, the powers also extend into actions which give rise to a loss of amenity and limited powers are available to the planning authority to deal with land or property which is being kept in an untidy or derelict state and is resulting in a loss of amenity to the area.

The council is required, under section 158A of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997, to produce and distribute an enforcement charter, which sets out:

  • a statement of the authority's policies for taking enforcement action;
  • an account of how members of the public are to bring any suspected breach of planning control to the attention of the council;
  • how any complaint to the authority over a suspected breach is to be made; and
  • the council's procedures for dealing with any such complaint.

 

Should you wish to submit comments in regards to the consultation document please complete the survey below:

New Development in the Countryside

New Development in the Countryside Planning Guidance Consultation

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 5 December 2017 to consult on revised New Development in the Countryside Planning Guidance.

The current Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) on this subject supports the adopted West Lothian Local Plan 2009 but will require to be replaced when the new West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP) is adopted, anticipated later in 2018.

New Supplementary Guidance (SG) is produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice. 

The West Lothian Local Development Plan Proposed Plan identifies the circumstances where an exception can be made to an otherwise general policy of restraint in relation to development in the countryside. These are primarily where development can help to support the rural economy and where there is an evidenced and justifiable locational need. The SG seeks to maintain the need to safeguard the character and amenity of the countryside, protect the landscape and the most productive farmland while ensuring that any new development that is legitimised is well integrated into its surroundings, is visually and aesthetically attractive and is designed on environmental sustainability principles.

This new SG has had regard to and is compliant with all relevant national planning policies which are set out in the Strategic Development Plan and the policies of the new LDP in relation to rural development. Once approved it is intended that it will form part of the statutory supplementary guidance supporting the LDP.  The current guidance will not however be formally withdrawn until the new guidance has been reported to Scottish Ministers and  confirmed as statutory.

Draft Planning Guidelines (PG) on The Vennel, Linlithgow

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 3rd April 2017 to consult on Draft Planning Guidelines (PG) on The Vennel, Linlithgow. The council recognises the importance and sensitivity of the site which lies in close proximity to Linlithgow Palace and loch and has therefore chosen to extend the consultation period from 6 to 9 weeks.

There has been ongoing redevelopment, renovation and enhancement of large properties in central Linlithgow over the last decade. The imminent opening of the new partnership centre at the County Buildings and the transfer of partnership services to this building will result in a number of properties in and around The Vennel becoming surplus to requirements. This presents a rare opportunity to consider some of the urban design issues in The Vennel area through investment opportunities.

The purpose of this planning guidance is to set out the considerations which will guide and influence the future development of the area and identify the detailed criteria upon which the council, as planning authority, would assess any forthcoming proposals. To guide redevelopment of this complex site the proposed planning guidance provides an Urban Design Framework which sets the design parameters for an anticipated masterplan which would demonstrate how new development would improve and regenerate The Vennel area.  Amendments to the planning guidance may be required following consultation with interested parties. Approval of the guidance will allow for the marketing and, in time, re-development of the site. The planning guidance provided is without prejudice to any further comments and decisions that may be made by the council on any formal consideration of a planning application to develop the site.

Flooding and the Water Environment

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 6 February 2017 to consult on updated Supplementary Guidance (SG) on flooding and the water environment. The guidance has been prepared to update and refresh the council's current Supplementary Planning Guidance 'West Lothian Flood Risk and Drainage' adopted in 2008.

Flooding can have a detrimental impact on people, businesses and the environment. West Lothian Council is committed to reducing the vulnerability of existing and future developments to flooding. Through the planning system, we will aim to prevent development that would have a significant probability of being affected by flooding or would increase the probability of flooding elsewhere.

Scottish Planning Policy states the planning system should promote: 

  • a precautionary approach to flood risk from all sources, including coastal, water course (fluvial), surface water (pluvial), groundwater, reservoirs and drainage systems (sewers and culverts), taking account of the predicted effects of climate change; 
  • flood avoidance: by safeguarding flood storage and conveying capacity, and locating development away from functional flood plains and medium to high risk areas; 
  • flood reduction: assessing flood risk and, where appropriate, undertaking natural and structural flood management measures, including flood protection, restoring natural features and characteristics, enhancing flood storage capacity, avoiding the construction of new culverts and opening existing culverts where possible; and 
  • avoidance of increased surface water flooding through requirements for Sustainable Drainage Systems (SUDS) and minimising the area of impermeable surface. 

This Supplementary Guidance on flooding and the water environment has been produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice (in particular, policies EMG1, EMG2, and EMG3 of the emerging West Lothian Local Development Plan).

Air Quality

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 3 April 2017 to consult on updated Supplementary Guidance (SG) on Air Quality.

Policy EMG 4 of the emerging Local Development Plan requires developers, where appropriate, to provide additional information on the impact of their proposed development on air quality. This Supplementary Guidance on Air Quality has been produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice.

The supplementary guidance on air quality provides information on:

  • When an air quality assessment is likely to be required.
  • What should be included in an air quality impact assessment.
  • Mitigations of air quality impacts.

West Lothian Council is committed to ensuring that health based air quality standards are achieved to protect the health of our citizens. The council has a responsibility through the planning system to ensure no new pollution hotspots are created or no significant new human exposure is introduced where there could be existing poor air quality.

Air quality across West Lothian is generally very good in that pollutant concentrations are within the health based air quality objectives at most locations. At locations where regular exceedances of the Scottish air quality objectives are known to occur and human exposure is present, the council is required to declare an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA).

To date, three AQMA have been declared in West Lothian. These are located in Broxburn, Linlithgow and Newton. Road traffic emissions are the main source of pollution in Broxburn and Linlithgow. In Newton domestic combustion contributes a significant proportion of particulate emissions.

Residential Development Planning Guidance Consultation

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 26 October 2015 to consult on revised Residential Development Planning Guidance.

Residential Development Planning Guidance

Supplementary Guidance (SG) is produced by the council in order to explain how particular development plan policies should be applied in practice. This particular SG seeks to ensure a consistent application of policy and to provide a design framework for all who are involved in the provision of new residential development within West Lothian: it brings together all the elements that help contribute towards cohesive housing layout design. It promotes and encourages high quality and innovative housing developments that are visually attractive, well integrated into their surroundings, designed on environmental sustainability principles and which offer a good standard of amenity to new and future occupants while also protecting the amenity of existing residents.

The current RDG (and companion guidance on small scale residential development) are being refreshed and consolidated, principally to ensure that they reflect and are consistent with the latest Scottish Government policy guidance, but also to enable references to legislation and supporting documents to be updated. Once approved they will form part of the statutory supplementary guidance supporting the West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP).

West Lothian Place-Based Green Networks Guidance Consultation

It was agreed at a meeting of the Development and Transport Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel on 26 October 2015 to consult on Place-Based Green Network Guidance.

West Lothian Place-Based Green Networks Guidance

Green Networks are concerned with linking up areas of open space across West Lothian. Central to the concept are the principles of "connectivity" and "multi-functionality" i.e.; green networks link people and places, but also provide habitat networks for species movement and can all be provided on one site. They help the delivery of high quality sustainable places and more efficient use of land as well as supporting the long term Central Scotland Green Network concept.

Local Biodiversity Sites (LBS) are also important contributions to the wider green network and there are approximately 130 in West Lothian, though most are along riparian corridors which form the remaining parts of West Lothian undisturbed by human activity. 

In this context, following an audit and field survey by the British Geological Survey, the 50 most important Local Geodiversity Sites (LGS) in West Lothian are listed in this draft Green Network Supplementary Guidance and on which comments are sought. Once approved the guidance will form part of the statutory supplementary guidance supporting the West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP).

Mid Calder Conservation Area

Mid Calder Conservation Area was designated in 1976 and is centred on the historic core of Main Street, Market Street and Bank Street. West Lothian Council are proposing to change the boundary of the conservation area to focus on these historic streets.

The conservation area is an important factor in protecting Mid Calder's historic environment and heritage. The proposed changes to the Mid Calder Conservation Area will affect the areas included and removed from the conservation area.

It is important that the council gauges the views of the residents of Mid Calder in order to determine whether or not it should go ahead with the proposed changes. 

Public Survey

A public engagement survey for residents of Combfoot Cottages only, has been sent to all effected householders and is also available online:

Map of Proposed Area Boundary (click to enlarge)

Mid Calder Conservation Area Displays a larger version of this image in a new browser window
Mid Calder Conservation Area

 List of address, which would be removed if the proposed boundary were adopted

STREETNUMBERSPOSTCODE
Almondside1 - 18EH53 0AZ
Avenue Park1 - 52EH53 0AQ
Avenue Park West2 - 12EH53 0AH
Avenue Park WestCunnigar HouseEH53 0AH
CombfootReid LodgeEH53 0AJ
Combfoot Cottages1 - 40EH53 0AB, EH53 0AD, EH53 0AG
Cunnigar Gardens1 - 20EH53 0AE
Kennedie Park1 - 20EH53 0RG
Market Street22, 23, 24, 25, 27EH53 0AA/L
Pumpherston Road37EH53 0AX
South Lodge-EH53 0HN
Tennent Park1 - 37EH53 0RF
Wallace Mill Gardens1 - 75EH53 0BE, EH53 0BG, EH53 0BE

 

Advice for Owners in Conservation Areas 

The character of CAs can be compromised over time by numerous small alterations leading to a loss of historic character. Understanding the features which make an area characterful, is important to achieving sympathetic maintenance and restoration. The Mid Calder Conservation Area 2017 leaflet, provides advice to owners living within the conservation area.

 

We've updated our Privacy Policy

We've made some important changes to our Privacy Policy and we want you to know what this means for you and your data. You can view the Development Plan and Environment Privacy Notice on the Planning Policy webpage.