Letterbox Image Submission

A New Local Plan for Darlington

A new development plan for long term investment and growth for Darlington is being prepared for the next 20 years, up to 2036. It will set out where significant new development should go and will include policies to protect valued environments and heritage, and ensure liveable places.

We need to ensure our population’s needs for housing, a thriving economy, community facilities and infrastructure are met, as well as safeguarding the environment, adapting to climate change and securing good design. By 2036, there could be at least 10,000 new homes, supporting the creation of at least 7000 new jobs and helping to sustain a vibrant town centre and high quality sports and recreation facilities and spaces. The Local Plan will be a framework of policies and guidance that will make growth happen in a well thought out, sustainable way.

The Council submitted the Darlington Local Plan to the Secretary of State for formal public examination on 22 December 2020.  As part of the examination, public hearings were held to assess its legal compliance and ‘soundness’.  This included whether the Plan had been positively prepared, was justified, was effective and was consistent with national policy.

The hearings commenced on Tuesday 25 May and ran until Thursday 24 June 2021.  Due to coronavirus legislation and restrictions at that time, and the related capacity issues at Darlington Town Hall, the hearing sessions were held virtually, using Microsoft Teams. All of the sessions can still be viewed on YouTube.

The Proposed Modifications consultation began on Tuesday 19 October and ran until Tuesday 30 November 2021.  For more details please visit the Local Plan Examination page.

Mr William Fieldhouse BA(Hons) MA MRTPI has been appointed to conduct the examination.

For any contact with the Inspector, or for queries relating to the hearings, please contact the appointed Programme Officer, who is an independent officer for the examination working under the Inspector’s direction.

Mrs Liz Sheard, Darlington Local Plan Programme Officer
Darlington Borough Council, Town Hall, Feethams, Darlington, DL1 5QT
Tel: 01325 406656
Email: [email protected]

If you have requested to appear at a hearing session additional information is set out in the Inspector’s letter and guidance notes provided via the Programme Officer.


All updates about the Local Plan Examination process, timetable, submission Local Plan and Policies Maps, evidence documents and other relevant information will be made available on the Local Plan Examination page.

For further information about the Local Plan or planning policy in general please contact the Planning Policy Team on 01325 406724 or [email protected]

All consultations can be viewed on the Consultation Portal [external link]

Details of our consultation methods can be seen within our Statement of Representation Procedure [PDF document] which shows how the Council is engaging with communities and stakeholders about the Local Plan. 

If you’re looking for Darlington’s adopted planning policies and planning position statement these can be found in the Planning pages on the main Council Website. [Opens new tab/window]