Employment Land Retention Supplementary Planning Document

Ended on the 15th February 2010
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Appendix 2 - Sustainability Appraisal (SA)

1.0 Introduction

1.1 The Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 requires all local planning authorities to undertake a Sustainability Appraisal (SA), incorporating the requirements of Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA).

1.2 In accordance with these requirements, the following report forms the Sustainability Appraisal Report for the draft Employment Land Retention Supplementary Planning Document (SPD). Initially, this report sets out the background to sustainable development and sustainability appraisal, and reports on the context, objectives and baseline used in the assessment.

1.3 This Sustainability Appraisal Report proposes two options to take the proposed guidance forward. An assessment of each of these options is presented, supported by the sustainability appraisal matrix. 

1.4 For further information with regard to the Employment Land Retention SPD or this Sustainability Appraisal Report, please contact the Planning Policy team on 01424 451098, or email fplanning@hastings.gov.uk.

2.0 Summary and outcomes

2.1 Sustainability Appraisal is a way of ensuring that the potential economic, social and environmental effects of the proposed SPD are identified, and measures are taken to ensure the SPD meets sustainable development objectives. This SPD proposes further guidance to support Policy E4 of the adopted Hastings Local Plan 2004 in relation to the change of use or redevelopment of employment land, and sets out guidelines and criteria against which planning applications will be assessed.

2.2 The alternative to the production of the SPD is to take a ‘business as usual’ approach. Without the additional guidance provided through the SPD, Policy E4 may be applied inconsistently and this could lead to the unnecessary loss of employment premises and land, and the potential decline of commercial areas.

2.3 The objectives of the Employment Land Retention SPD have been assessed individually against the sustainability objectives. The results show that no negative effects will arise from the SPD objectives, or the SPD itself.

2.4 The findings of this Sustainability Appraisal will be used to inform the development of the SPD.

3.0 Background

Sustainable Development

3.1 In 1987, the World Commission on Environment and Development defined sustainable development as "development, which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs" (The Brundtland Commission Report – Our Common Future, 1987)

3.2 March 2005 saw the Government publishing its new sustainable development strategy ’Securing the Future: Delivering UK Sustainable Development Strategy’.  This strategy aims to ensure that sustainable development is pursued in an integrated ay through the planning system, working towards a sustainable and productive economy, promotes social inclusion, sustainable communities and personal well being.

3.3 To achieve these aims, 5 guiding principles were identified:

  1. Living within environmental limits
  2. Ensuring a strong, healthy and just society
  3. Achieving a sustainable economy
  4. Promoting good governance and
  5. Using sound science responsibly

3.4 Planning Policy Statement 1: Delivering Sustainable Development (DCLG, 2005) reinforces that Local Development Frameworks must ensure that achieving sustainable development is pursued in line with the above principles. To accord with this, the UK Strategy objectives have been fully integrated into the sustainability framework set out in this report.

What are Sustainability Appraisal and Strategic Environmental Assessment?

3.5 Sustainability Appraisal is a requirement of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004, with Strategic Environmental Assessment deriving from the European Union Directive 2001/42/EC. Government guidance allows the requirements of SEA to be incorporated into the Sustainability Appraisal process, in the form of one single document. Sustainability Appraisal can then become a tool used to ensure that the principles of sustainable development are fully taken into account when preparing documents as part of the Hastings Local Development Framework.

3.6 This SA Report will incorporate the requirements of SEA, and will make sure that the social, economic and environmental considerations are taken into account in the preparation of the Employment Land Retention Supplementary Planning Document (SPD). It will identify and report on the likely significant effects of the SPD, and also the extent to which implementation of the SPD will deliver the social, environmental and economic objectives of sustainable development.  Appendix 1 identifies how this Sustainability Appraisal Report complies with the SEA Directive.

3.7 In line with government guidance, the sustainability appraisal for the emerging Hastings Local Development Framework can be used to inform the sustainability appraisal of SPDs. Therefore, this SA Report draws on, and is consistent with the Sustainability Appraisal of the Core Strategy Preferred Approaches and the existing Scoping Report for the LDF.

4.0 Employment Land Retention SPD

4.1 Under Local Plan Policy E4, the Council seeks to safeguard all employment land within the built up area. This SPD provides clarity on the circumstances where change of use or redevelopment to alternative uses may be appropriate and the criteria which would have to be satisfied in order to obtain planning permission for these alternative uses. This SPD seeks to ensure that loss of any existing employment site (land or premises) is not at the expense of the local economy

4.2 The objectives of the SPD are:

  1. To ensure an adequate supply of employment land within Hastings up to 2026, including:
    1. the provision of suitable locations which are available for industrial and commercial developments, and;
    2. provision for a broad range of business types from small start-up businesses, through to small, medium and large enterprises.
  2. To protect existing and allocated employment sites/premises for industrial and commercial use where there is a good prospect of employment use and to also consider the upgrading or improvement of existing sites.
  3. To help maintain and create employment opportunities within the town

4.3 The preparation of the SPD will assist with the successful implementation of Policy E4 of the Hastings Local Plan 2004:

Policy E4 – Retaining Employment Uses

Employment land within the built-up area will be safeguarded.  Planning permission will not be granted for development which would result in loss of land used or held for:-

Class B1 Business Use;
Class B2 General Industrial Use;
Class B8 Storage or Distribution Use;
Any uses of a similar character to those above, but not falling within the specified Use Classes, e.g. depot, builder’s yard

Exceptions to Policy E4 may occur where continued use of the site for such purposes would have an unacceptable impact on the amenities of neighbouring residents, or where the character of the area has changed over time, such that industrial/employment uses would be detrimental in that location. In order to sustain employment, the Council will seek to help businesses which are non-conforming uses or detrimental to a residential area to relocate to more sustainable location.

5.0 Context, Objectives and Baseline

Identifying other relevant Policies, Plans, Programmes and Sustainability Objectives

5.1 An important part of the sustainability appraisal process is to identify any relevant policies, plans, programmes (PPPs), or sustainability objectives that could be likely to influence the Employment Land Retention SPD. This review has been carried out in accordance with government guidance, and has identified the following PPPs to be relevant:

National

  • Planning Policy Statement 1: Delivering Sustainable Development
  • Draft Planning Policy Statement 4: Planning for Prosperous Economies
  • Planning Policy Statement 6: Planning for Town Centres
  • Planning Policy Statement 12: Local Spatial Planning

Regional

  • The South East Plan
  • The Regional Economic Strategy for the South East 2006-2016

Local

  • Hastings and St Leonards Community Strategy
  • Hastings Local Development Framework: Core Strategy Preferred Approaches
  • Hastings Local Plan 2004
  • Hastings and Bexhill Economic Development and Inclusion Strategy
  • 5 Point Plan

5.2 Appendix 2 provides the results of this review in full, giving a brief explanation of the key aims of each plan, policy or programme, and how the new SPD can respond.

5.3 A number of key messages were identified from the review that will be taken into account in developing the Employment Land Retention SPD. These have helped to identify the key sustainability issues that need to be considered as part of the sustainability appraisal process. Sustainability issues and problem are discussed below.

Baseline information

5.4 Identifying relevant baseline information provides the basis for predicting and monitoring effects and helps to identify sustainability issues and alternative ways of dealing with them. Baseline information has been collected on environmental, social and economic issues for the emerging Hastings Local Development Framework and is set out in the Revised Scoping Report.

5.5 As the SPD covers the whole of the town, it is considered that the full baseline in the Scoping Report is relevant to this sustainability appraisal report. However, the following baseline information is particularly relevant:

  • 7.9% of working age population in Hastings is unemployed (Jan – Dec 08) compared to 4.6% in the South East
  • 7.66% of employment floorspace was vacant in February 2008 (Employment Land Review, 2008)
  • Most jobs are in public administration, education and health (42.2%), distribution, hotels and restaurants (24.3%), banking, finance and insurance (11.0%) and manufacturing (10.6%), (Annual Business Inquiry 2007).
  • In 2008, 35.7% of the Hastings working age workforce is part-time compared to a regional figure of 23.6% and 24.5% for the whole of England (ONS/Annual Population Survey).
  • 85% of businesses employ 10 or fewer people.
  • Average earnings of Hastings residents are low, at 71% of the South East average (ESIF, 2008).
  • Average median weekly earnings for full-time workers in Hastings in 2008 were £386, compared to £500 in the South East and £479 nationally, (ONS/Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings 2008).
  • A major issue for the Town is the level of economic participation - we have relatively low employment and economic activity rates.  In 2008, Hastings had a lower employment rate (68.5%) than regional rate (78.5%) and the national average (74.2%).  Similarly, economic activity rates (those people of working age either in employment or seeking work) show that Hastings (74.4%) falls below the GB rate while East Sussex (80.9%) as a whole is above the GB rate (78.8%) (Nomis, Dec 2008).
  • In July 2009, there were 2918 claimants of Jobseekers Allowance (JSA)1 in Hastings. In 2008, there were 1859 claimants of JSA in Hastings. This increase in the number of JSA claimants is believed to be as a result of the economic downturn.

Sustainability issues and problems

5.6 Using the current baseline information, priorities identified in other plans and programmes, as well as early engagement feedback on the proposed SPD, the key sustainability issues to be considered include:

  • Hastings has one of the weakest economies in the South East region. This is most graphically highlighted by the low level of economic productivity (Gross Value Added) of local businesses, being only 68% of the regional average
  • Hastings, which is the centre of the ‘Travel to Work Area’ (TTWA), has ingrained high levels of deprivation. This is reflected in the number of Wards in the worst 10% and 20% nationally when measured against the overall Index of Multiple Deprivation.  Local earnings are also well below regional and County averages.
  • There is clear regional and local commitment to improving the economic health of the area, as a key part of increasing the quality of life of residents and ensuring sustainable growth.
  • National and regional policy indicates that Local Authorities should be providing for a range of business types in the town, from small start ups and medium sized businesses, to larger commercial developments
  • The South East Plan acknowledges a shortage of business sites in the sub-region, and that a step change in economic performance is necessary – Hastings Borough Council need’s to ensure that the continued loss of employment floorspace does not exacerbate these problems
  • Local Authorities, through their Development Plans, need to provide for a full range of economic development needs, to support retention of employment and enable expansion and to create opportunities for inward investment and new uses

The Sustainability Appraisal Framework

5.7 A Sustainability Appraisal Framework has been developed to consistently assess the component documents of the Hastings Local Development Framework.  This framework takes account of the objectives of national, regional and local planning policy, as well as other strategies, plans and programmes in the context of the economic, social and environmental characteristics of Hastings. A full version of the Sustainability Appraisal framework, taken from the Scoping Report, is featured in Appendix 3. 

5.8 In line with government guidance, the compatibility of the sustainability objectives within the framework have been tested against each other. The results of the assessment are shown in the revised Scoping Report, available at www.hastings.gov.uk/ldf/resources.aspx#sus.

Compatibility of the Employment Land Retention SPD objectives and the Sustainability Objectives

5.9 The next stage of the Sustainability Appraisal process is to test the compatibility of sustainability appraisal objectives against the objectives of the new SPD.  This assessment will make sure that the objectives are consistent with each other, or alternatively, will identify conflict where it exists.

5.10 Appendix 4 shows the detailed assessment of the SPD objective against the sustainability objectives. The assessment has used the following categories:

Significant positive effect (TickTick): The impact of the SPD on the sustainability objective will be a significant positive impact.

Slight positive effect (Tick): The effect the SPD will have on the sustainability objective is likely to be positive, although this is not certain, or; the impact of the SPD on the sustainability objective will be a positive impact, but not significant.

Potential, or uncertain effect (?): There is no relationship, or no significant relationship between the objective and the policy.

No effect or direct link (-): The SPD will have no impact on the sustainability objective

Slight negative effect (X): The effect the SPD will have on the sustainability objective is likely to be negative, although this is not certain, or; the impact of the SPD on the sustainability objective will be a negative impact, but not significant

Significant negative effect (XX): The impact of the SPD on the sustainability objective will be a significant negative impact. 

Assessment Results

5.11 The assessment in appendix 4 shows clearly that the sustainability objectives are either all compatible with, or have no link to the SPD objectives. In particular, the SPD objectives score positively against sustainability objectives relating to economic issues.

5.12 Specifically, the SPD will positively contribute to the following SA objectives:

  • Improving the health and well being of the population
  • Contributing to reducing levels of poverty and social exclusion
  • Contribute to the creation of vibrant and locally distinctive communities
  • Urban renaissance and more efficient use of land and buildings
  • Economic revival and economic growth
  • Indigenous and inward investment

5.13 The SPD has the most significant positive effects in terms of:

  • Improving accessibility to jobs and services
  • Creating high and stable levels of employment and employment opportunities for all

5.14 No negative effects have been recorded for this assessment.

Consideration of Options

5.15 The SEA Directive and advice in the CLG "Plan Making Manual" (www.pas.gov.uk) require the consideration of options to be undertaken as part of the appraisal process. For the purpose of the Employment Land Retention SPD, two options have been considered:

  1. To prepare guidance to support Policy E4 of the adopted Hastings Local Plan 2004, and to provide guidelines and criteria against which planning applications will be assessed.
  2. To undertake the "business as usual" approach and rely on existing national, regional and local planning policy.

5.16 The detailed assessment of these options is shown in Appendix 5. Using the same categories as shown above, the options have been appraised over the short (0-5 years), medium (5-10 years) and long term (10+ years) (S, M, L)

Assessment results

Option 1

5.17 No negative sustainability effects have been recorded in the assessment of option 1, and it is considered to have positive effects on both the social and economic sustainability objectives.

5.18 Resisting any further loss of employment land to other uses in all areas of the town will increase the potential for job opportunities and employment space availability for businesses. The provision of these will work particularly well in terms of improving the well being of the population, improving skills, and impacting positively on social exclusion and poverty.

5.19 The SPD seeks to maintain a range of employment uses in different locations, not just on employment estates. This will also help to create vibrant communities and active employment areas, although it is not considered that the output of the SPD alone will be so significant to encourage significant investment or economic growth for the town as a whole.

Option 2

5.20 Analysis of this option has recorded both negative and positive sustainability effects.

5.21 Relying on the existing Local Plan policy alone, without requiring the submission of evidence to show non-viability (as required in the proposed SPD) may result in the continued loss of employment land and premises. In turn, this will negatively affect job opportunities, access to employment, and levels of poverty and social exclusion. 

5.22 Allowing change of use without demonstrating lack of viability could also result in an uncertain or potential effect on sustainability objectives in terms of making the most efficient use of land. Changing the use of existing employment sites could result in either a more efficient, or less efficient use being accommodated on the site.

5.23 Negative sustainability effects have also been recorded with regard to the economic sustainability objectives, particularly in terms of reduced levels of employment and the subsequent effect this will have on economic growth and revival.

5.24 In light of the above analysis, it is considered that Option 1 is the most sustainable option as no negative effects have been recorded, and it goes the furthers in achieving the sustainable development objectives. Neither option has any recorded link to the environmental sustainability objectives, as the SPD relates to existing employment uses and land, not the provision of new development.

Mitigation Measures

5.25 From the appraisal of the draft Employment Land Retention SPD, it can be seen that in the main, the document will have a positive impact on the 23 sustainability objectives. With no negative impacts identified, the needs for mitigation measures to be developed has not been necessary.

Monitoring

5.26 The Employment Land Retention SPD will need to be monitored to identify any unforeseen effects, and to allow for remediation action to take place.  Questions that will be addressed through the monitoring process include:

  • Whether the SPD is contributing towards meeting the sustainability objectives; and
  • Whether there are any other effects from implementation of the SPD that need to be considered

5.27 The overarching sustainability appraisal framework will set out indicators against which to measure the sustainability effects of implementing the component documents of Hastings Local Development Framework. This framework will be updated regularly in order to help to measure how well the LDF, and this SPD, contribute to sustainable development. Such monitoring will enable any unforeseen, or undesirable effects and as such, enable corrective action to be taken where necessary. A single monitoring system will be established for the various components of the LDF, including the Employment Land Retention SPD, and will be reported through the Annual Monitoring Report.

Appendix 1 – Compliance with the SEA Directive

Requirement of SEA Directive: Where covered in this report
a) An outline of the contents, main objectives of the plan or programme, and relationship with other relevant plans and programmes. N/A
b) The relevant aspects of the current state of the environment and the likely evolution thereof without implementation of the plan or programme N/A
c) The environmental characteristics of areas likely to be significantly affected N/A
d) Any existing environmental problems which are relevant to the plan or programme including, in particular, those relating to any areas of a particular environmental importance, such as areas designated pursuant to Directives 79/409/EEC and 92/43/EEC N/A
e) The environmental protection objectives, which are relevant to the plan or programme and the way those objective and any environmental considerations have been taken into account during its preparation N/A
f) The likely significant effects on the environment, including on issues such as biodiversity, population, human health, fauna, flora, soil, water, air, climatic factors, material assets, cultural heritage including architectural and archaeological heritage, landscape and the interrelationship between the above factors N/A
g) The measures envisaged to prevent, reduce and as fully as possible offset any significant adverse effects on the environment of implementing the plan or programme N/A
h) An outline of the reasons for selecting the alternatives dealt with, and a description of how the assessment was undertaken including any difficulties encountered in compiling the required information N/A
i) A description of measured envisaged concerning monitoring in accordance with Article 10 N/A
j) A non-technical summary of the information provided under the above headings N/A
The report shall include the information that may reasonably be required taking into account current knowledge and methods of assessment, the contents and level of detail in the plan or programme, its stage in the decision-making process and the extent to which certain matters are more appropriately assessed at different levels in that process to avoid duplication of the assessment N/A
Consultation:
  • Authorities with environmental responsibility, when deciding on the scope and level of detail of the information to be included in the environmental report
  • Authorities with environmental responsibility and the public shall be given an early and effective opportunity within appropriate time frames to express their opinion of the draft plan or programme and the accompanying environmental report before the adoption of the plan or programme
The 4 statutory environmental bodies were consulted on the Scoping Report, which was prepared for all documents forming the LDF.  The comments were incorporated into the revised Scoping Report.
Taking the environmental report and the results of the consultations into account in decision-making The results of the environmental report and consultation responses received will be taken into account before the SPD is adopted.
Provision of information on the decision:
  • when the plan or programme is adopted, the public and any countries consulted shall be informed and the following made available to those so informed:
  • the plan or programme as adopted
  • a statement summarizing how environmental considerations have been integrated into the plan, how any consultation responses have been taken into account and the reasons for choosing the plan as adopted
  • the measures for monitoring
This will be undertaken once the SPD is adopted
Monitor the significant environmental effects of the implementation of plans to identify at an early stage unforeseen adverse effects and so to take remedial action.

Appendix 2 - Review of relevant plans, programmes, policies, strategies and initiatives

Planning Policy Statement 1: Delivering Sustainable Development (CLG, 2005)

Document title Key aims, relevant objectives or targets How these will be addressed in the SPD

NATIONAL

Planning Policy Statement 1: Delivering Sustainable Development (CLG, 2005) One of the four aims for sustainable development is:
  • The maintenance of high and stable levels of economic growth and employment
The PPS sets out that planning should facilitate and promote sustainable and inclusive patterns of urban and rural development by; ‘contributing to sustainable economic growth’. The key principles include:
  • Recognising that economic development can deliver environmental and social benefits
  • Ensuring that suitable locations are available for industrial, commercial, retail, public sector, tourism, and leisure developments, so that the economy can prosper.
  • Providing for improved productivity, choice and competition, particularly when technological and other requirements of modern business are changing rapidly, and
  • Actively promoting and facilitating good quality development, which is sustainable and consistent with their plans
Sustainable development must be integral to the aims and objectives of the SPD, and recognise that its contents need to contribute to sustainable economic growth.
Draft PPS 4: Planning for Prosperous Economies (CLG, August 2008) This sets out the Government’s planning policies for sustainable economic development. It provides an extensive list of what economic development entails, including development within the B Use Classes2.Identifies that provision should be made for a broad range of business types such as small start-up businesses, through to small and medium enterprises as well as larger commercial or industrial premises.  All planning applications for economic development other than main town centre uses should be considered favourably unless the economic, social and or environmental costs outweigh the benefits. Development plan policies should avoid designating sites for single or restricted use classes, and avoid carrying forward existing allocations where these cannot be justified. Local Planning Authorities need to development an evidence base to understand both existing business needs and likely changes in the market. Sustainable economic development should be integral to the aims and objectives of the SPD. It should help to ensure the long-term provision of a range of employment sites and premises in the town, and ensure that any loss of sites/premises relates to those that are no longer suitable or viable as employment premises.
PPS 6: Planning for Town Centres (CLG, March 2005) This PPS covers town centres and sets out appropriate uses for the main town centres, which include office uses. The government’s key objective is to ‘promote their vitality and viability’ by planning for the growth and development of existing centres; and promoting and enhancing existing centres, by focusing development in such centres. The SPD should help ensure the promotion of the vitality and viability of centres in the town, a key component of successful town centres is a mix of uses.
PPS12: Local Spatial Planning (CLG, June 2008) The PPS sets out the contents and process for producing Local Development Documents (which include SPDs) as part of the Local Development Framework. Follow procedure in developing the SPD

REGIONAL

The South East Plan (SEEPB, May 2009) Sets out a criteria based policy for employment and land provision.In relation to the Sussex Coast Sub Region (including Hastings), it sets out:
  • there is a general shortage of available new business sites and premises in some parts of the sub-region.
  • pursue and promote sustainable economic growth and regeneration to raise the sub-regional economy up to the South East average.
  • realise a step-change in the sub-regions economic performance, whilst increasing the areas attraction as a business location.
  • deliver sufficient appropriate sites and premises for business and other uses that will help to facilitate the regeneration of the local economy.
  • gives priority to employment rather than other uses in those locations most conductive to business and industry to ensure delivery of employment is supported.
The Plan identifies Hastings as a Regional Hub and a major employment centre, with a focus for future major development for employment. Requires local development documents to ensure land and premises are available to meet the specific requirements of nationally and regional importance sectors and clusters.  Local authorities should also have regard to strategic and local business needs and in planning for the location, quantity and nature of employment land and premises, should facilitate a flexible supply of land to meet the carrying needs of the economic sectors.  Accessible and well located industrial and commercial sites should be retained where there is a good prospect of employment use. Local development documents should also give priority to delivering economic development in allocating land, protect sites for industrial and commercial use where there is a good prospect of employment use and should also consider whether any upgrading or improvement of existing sites is required.
The SPD will help ensure that sufficient appropriate sites are available to facilitate economic regeneration
Regional Economic Strategy for the South East: 2006-2016 (SEEDA, 2006) The principle aims of the strategy are to achieve global competitiveness, smart growth and sustainable prosperity in the South East region. This SPD will help ensure that Hastings will remain competitive, whilst ensuring there is a suitable supply of employment land.

LOCAL

Hastings and St Leonards Community Strategy (HBC, 2003) In order to implement the overall 10-year vision of the Community Strategy, 7 key themes have been identified.  These include: ‘a safer town’, ‘an economically successful town’, ‘a learning town’, ‘an inclusive town’, ‘a healthier town’, ‘a town with a decent home for everyone’, and ‘a town that’s good to live in’. The key themes most relevant to the new SPD are likely to include ‘a town that’s good to live in’, ‘an economically successful town’, and ‘a safer town’.  Resisting the further loss of employment floorspace, which will in turn maintain and provide job opportunities, should be key features of the SPD.
Hastings Local Development Framework Preferred Approaches (May 2008) The long-term strategy to deliver growth and regeneration in Hastings over the next 20 years.  The vision is: "By 2026, Hastings will be a safe and thriving place to live in, that offers a high quality of life, and has a strong economy and sustainable future, founded upon our unique heritage and seaside location, and supported by social, economic, cultural and environmental regeneration" This SPD will help ensure that Hastings will remain competitive, by ensuring there is a suitable supply of employment land, which in turn will help contribute towards a strong economy.
Hastings Local Plan 2004 Statutory development plan for the town up to 2011.  The strategy for land use and transport in the town focuses on the following key areas:
  • Economic regeneration – Employment
  • Economic regeneration – Town Centres
  • Social regeneration – Housing
  • Physical regeneration - Environment
  • Integrated transport
  • Working with the community
This SPD will help implement the strategy in the Local Plan which focuses on economic regeneration through employment. This SPD will support existing policy in order to ensure that Hastings has a suitable supply of employment land.
Hastings and Bexhill Economic Development and Inclusion Strategy 2008-13 (Hastings and Bexhill Economic Alliance) This aims to take forward the economic development of the area under three objectives:
  1. Success – to increase business activity and create employment providing a range of job opportunities and increase average earnings
  2. Inclusion – to enable local people, particularly those who are disadvantaged, to raise their skills and aspirations and to get jobs offering stable employment and a living wage
  3. Sustainability – to achieve and maintain environmentally sustainable prosperity by maximising environmental benefits and opportunities and minimising negative environmental impacts.
The Strategy is intended to complement and support the 5 Point Plan of the Hastings and Bexhill Task Force, of which the Council is a key member. It includes the specific aim to "safeguard existing sites and premises, and encourage the redevelopment of out-moded stock, increasing density where appropriate" (Aim 1.1.1)
The SPD will help complement the aims of the strategy, and it specifically aims to safeguard existing employment sites and premises. This will be a principal objective of the SPD.
The Five Point Plan (Hastings and Bexhill Task Force, 2001) To coordinate the town’s regeneration, the Hastings and Bexhill Task force focus on five points of activity:
  • Education – achieving excellence in education led by a new university centre
  • Business – creating some 100,000m2 of top class business and education space over a limited period of time
  • Urban renaissance – building around 1,400 new homes through the Hastings Millennium Community, and expanding business and employment opportunities
  • Broadband – encouraging widespread adoption of broadband technology
  • Transport – improving the area’s transport infrastructure
The SPD will help ensure there is a suitable supply of employment land which will help complement the Task Force’s Five Point Plan, which seeks to coordinate the town’s regeneration through the five key focuses of activity.

Appendix 3 – The Sustainability Appraisal Framework

Objective number Objective Indicator
SOCIAL
1 More opportunities are provided for everyone to live in a decent, sustainability constructed and affordable home Affordable housing completions
Net housing completions.
Property affordability.
Condition of housing stock (unfit dwellings)
Number of empty homes brought back into use.
Number of households accepted as homeless
Number (or %) of new homes built to Code for Sustainable Homes level 3
Number of residential developments over 10 dwellings providing a percentage of the energy requirements from onsite renewable energy generation.
Number of qualifying developments/ properties installing SUDs
Housing density
Housing tenure
Property values
Household size
2 The health and well-being of the population is improved and inequalities in health are reduced Death rates from circulatory disease and cancer
Life expectancy
% of households with limiting long-term illness
General level of health - % of population describe their health as ‘not good’
Number of cyclist traffic accidents.
Number of participants engaged and registered on Active Hastings interventions.
Number of participants engaged and registered on Active Hastings interventions within 20% most deprived SOAs.
Attendance figures at Leisure Centres
3 Levels of poverty and social exclusion are reduced and the deprivation gap is closed between the more deprived areas in Hastings and the rest of the town Proportion of population who live in areas that rank within the most deprived 10-20% areas in the country.
Child poverty - Proportion of children under 16 who live-in low-income households
% of households in fuel poverty
4 Education and skills of the population improve GCSE qualifications age 15
Qualifications at age 19
% of school leavers pursuing further education
% of working age population with NVQ level 3 or above
% or working age population with NVQ level 4 or above (or equivalent)
5 All sectors of the community have improved accessibility to services, facilities, jobs, and social, cultural and recreational opportunities % of households within 300m of an accessible open space
Residents satisfaction - % of residents who are satisfied with their local area as a place to live
Percentage of new residential development within 30 minutes public transport time of a GP, hospital, primary and secondary school, employment and a major retail centre.
6 Safe and secure environments are created and there is a reduction in crime and the fear of crime Domestic burglaries per 1000 popltn
Violent offences committed per 1000 popltn
Recorded crime per 1000 popltn
Fear of crime – annual survey results
7 Vibrant and locally distinctive communities are created and sustained % of people satisfied with their local area as a place to live
% of people who feel their area is a place where people form other backgrounds can live harmoniously
ENVIRONMENTAL
8 Land and buildings are used more efficiently and urban renaissance encouraged % of residential development completed on brownfield land
% of employment development completed on brownfield land
Number of empty homes brought back into use
Number of qualifying developments/ properties installing SUDs
Number of commercial buildings over 1000sqm providing a percentage of their energy requirements from on site renewable energy generation
9 Biodiversity is protected, conserved and enhanced Condition of SSSI’s
Achievement of Local Biodiversity Action Plan targets
% of open spaces managed to green flag award standard
Change in areas and populations of biodiversity importance
10 The risk of flooding (fluvial & tidal) and coastal erosion is managed and reduced now and in the future Number of properties at risk of flooding
Number of planning applications submitting Flood Risk Assessments
Number of developments/properties installing SUDs
Planning permissions granted contrary to advice of the Environment Agency on either flood defence grounds or water quality
11 Parks and gardens, countryside, coast and the historic environment/townscape and landscape are protected, enhanced and made more accessible Number and % of listed buildings (Grade I and II)
& of open spaces managed to Green Flag Award standard
The number of buildings at risk
% of households within 300m of an accessible and open space
12 Air pollution is reduced and air quality continues to improve Number of designated air quality management areas
Road traffic growth
% Car ownership
13 The causes of climate change are addressed through reducing emissions of greenhouse gases (mitigation) and ensuring the Borough is prepared for its impacts (adaptation) Number (or %) of new homes built to Code for Sustainable Homes level 3
% of commercial buildings meeting BREEAM v good & excellent standards
Emissions of CO2 by sector
14 Water quality of freshwater bodies, waterways and the marine environment is maintained and improved and water consumption is reduced Number of qualifying developments/properties installing SUDs
Per capita consumption of water
Rivers of good or fair chemical and biological water quality
Compliance with European Bathing Water Directive
15 Energy efficiency is increased, fuel poverty is reduced and the proportion of energy generated from renewable resources is increased Household energy use per capita (Gas and Electricity)
Renewable energy capacity (MW) installed by type
16 Through waste re-use, recycling and minimisation the amount of waste for disposal is reduced Household waste arisings (tonnes)
% Recycling rates of household waste
% of the total tonnage of household waste arisings that have been composted
New homes provided with recycling/waste prevention facilities
17 Road congestion and pollution levels are reduced, and there is less car dependency and greater travel choice Bus passenger journeys
% household car ownership
Journeys to work by modes, cycling and walking
Road traffic growth
Average distance travelled to work
ECONOMIC
18 There are high and stable levels of employment and rewarding and satisfying employment opportunities for all Average (median) workplace based earnings
% employment rates for various sectors (manufacturing, construction, hotels & restaurants etc)
Job seeker allowance claimants
Economically active working age population
Unemployment rate
19 Economic revival in the more deprived areas of the town is stimulated and successfully achieved Business survival rates after 3 years
20 The sustained economic growth of the borough is achieved and linked closely to social regeneration Business start ups and closures
21 Indigenous and inward investment is encouraged and accommodated Employment land availability
Employment land (B use classes) applications granted planning consent
% increase/decrease in the number of VAT registered businesses

Appendix 4 - Compatibility of SPD objectives against the sustainability objectives

Sustainability Objectives
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21
SPD Objectives 1
-

-

Tick

-

Tick

-

Tick

Tick

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Tick

Tick

Tick

Tick

2
-

-

Tick

-

Tick

-

Tick

Tick

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Tick

Tick

Tick

Tick

3
-

Tick

Tick

Tick

TickTick

-

Tick

Tick

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

TickTick

Tick

Tick

Tick

TickTick Significant positive effect
Tick Slight positive effect
? Potential, or uncertain effect
- No direct link
X Slight negative effect
XX Significant negative effect

Appendix 5 – Sustainability Appraisal of Options

Key:     S = Short-term impact (0-5 years)
            M = Medium-term (5-10 years)
            L = Long-term (10+ years)
Sustainability Objective Option 1 – Prepare SPD Option 2 – Business as usual
1. More opportunities are provided for everyone to live in a decent, sustainability constructed and affordable home S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

2. The health and well-being of the population is improved and inequalities in health are reduced S

Access to employment helps to improve sense of well being

Without the additional guidance provided in the SPD, Policy E4 may be applied inconsistently and could lead to a loss of employment floorspace in all areas of the town. Losing this floorspace will affect local job opportunities, and subsequently, the well-being of the population
M

L
Tick

?

3. Levels of poverty and social exclusion are reduced and the deprivation gap is closed between the more deprived areas in Hastings and the rest of the town S

Resisting loss of employment land will work towards providing job opportunities

Loss of employment land (as above) could result in a negative impact on economic activity
M

?

L
Tick

?

4. Education and skills of the population improve S

Retention of employment space may increase opportunities for improving skill levels
-

No direct link
M

-

L
Tick

-

5. All sectors of the community have improved accessibility to services, facilities, jobs, and social, cultural and recreational opportunities S
Tick

Resisting the continued loss of employment space will help provide access to job opportunities
X

Continued loss of employment floorspace (as above) will result in fewer job opportunities
M
Tick

X

L
Tick

X

6. Safe and secure environments are created and there is a reduction in crime and the fear of crime S
-

No direct link
-

M
-

-

L
-

-

7. Vibrant and locally distinctive communities are created and sustained S
-

The SPD seeks to encourage investment into existing employment sites rather than simply changing the use. This may encourage redevelopment, taking account of design principles from other policies.
Tick

Active employment areas can contribute positively to creating vibrant communities
M
Tick

Tick

L
Tick

Tick

8. Land and buildings are used more efficiently and urban renaissance encouraged S
Tick

SPD requires viability testing to determine change of use, retaining employment uses where possible will contribute to urban renaissance
?

Allows change of use without demonstrating viability – there could be a more efficient use of the land or building
M
Tick

?

L
Tick

?

9. Biodiversity is protected, conserved and enhanced S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

10. The risk of flooding (fluvial & tidal) and coastal erosion is managed and reduced now and in the future S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

11. Parks and gardens, countryside, coast and the historic environment/townscape and landscape are protected, enhanced and made more accessible S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

12. Air pollution is reduced and air quality continues to improve S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

13. The causes of climate change are addressed through reducing emissions of greenhouse gases (mitigation) and ensuring the Borough is prepared for its impacts (adaptation) S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

14. Water quality of freshwater bodies, waterways and the marine environment is maintained and improved and water consumption is reduced S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

15. Energy efficiency is increased, fuel poverty is reduced and the proportion of energy generated from renewable resources is increased S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

16. Through waste re-use, recycling and minimisation the amount of waste for disposal is reduced S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

17. Road congestion and pollution levels are reduced, and there is less car dependency and greater travel choice S
-

No direct link
-

No direct link
M
-

-

L
-

-

18. There are high and stable levels of employment and rewarding and satisfying employment opportunities for all S
Tick

SPD could help to resist loss of employment space, and subsequent opportunities
X/?

The potential loss of space could result in fewer employment opportunities
M
Tick

X/?

L
Tick

X/?

19. Economic revival in the more deprived areas of the town is stimulated and successfully achieved S
?

SPD could help to resist loss of employment space, and subsequent opportunities
X/?

Loss of employment land could work against economic revival
M
?

X/?

L
?

X/?

20. The sustained economic growth of the borough is achieved and linked closely to social regeneration S
Tick/?

The SPD, by seeking to protect & retain a variety of premises could support economic growth
X/?

The potential loss of employment land could work against this objective
M
Tick/?

X/?

L
Tick/?

X/?

21. Indigenous and inward investment is encouraged and accommodated S
Tick/?

The SPD, by seeking to protect & retain will help maintain certainty for investors
?

Less certainty for investors
M
Tick/?

?

L
Tick/?

?


2 B1 Business, Offices, research and development, light industry. B2 General industrial, B8 Storage and distribution.

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