The South Ayrshire Local Plan (subsequently referred to as "the Local Plan") sets
out the policies, proposals and recommendations of the South Ayrshire Council (subsequently
referred to as "the Council") as the local planning authority, for the development
and other use of land, the protection of environmental resources and for the management
of transport and traffic within the administrative area of South Ayrshire Council.
Whilst the Local Plan does not have any formal end-date it is expected that all
specific development proposals will be commenced within five years and substantially
completed within ten years of the date of adoption of the Local Plan. Particular
policies of the Local Plan, such as those concerned with the protection of natural
and heritage resources can be expected to remain relevant for the longer term.
The Plan Area
This comprises the whole administrative area of South Ayrshire Council amounting
to 1,093 square kilometres. The extent of the Plan area is shown on the Proposals
The Plan Documents
The Local Plan comprises a Written Statement and a Proposals Map. The Written Statement
(this document) sets out the policies, proposals and recommendations for the development
or other use of land together with a reasoned justification and any necessary associated
explanatory text. The policies and proposals in the Written Statement each have
a reference number and, except where such policies and proposals cover the whole
Plan area, they are annotated on the relevant part of the Proposals Map. For clarity
many of the settlements are shown on larger scale inset maps.
Format and Layout of the Plan
The Plan groups all of the issues to be considered under six main headings, each
of which forms a chapter of the Plan; they are settlement strategy, economic development,
the environment, housing, facilities/services and implementation. Certain policies
that have an overall significance are called 'strategic policies' and these have
a particular degree of primacy. Some particular issues and certain localities have
required a particularly detailed and comprehensive approach. The Strategies included
within the Plan are the result of this approach.
It is especially important to appreciate that polices should not be considered in
isolation. Almost any proposal will raise issues which are the subject of many policies
and, therefore, these policies need to be considered together in order to provide
the fullest local plan assessment of any planning application or other proposal.
Rural Housing Policy Guidance
Section 25 of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act, 1997 requires that planning
applications shall be determined in accordance with the development plan unless
material considerations indicate otherwise. The development plan comprises of the
approved Ayrshire Joint Structure Plan (AJSP) and the adopted South Ayrshire Local
The Council must therefore take account of policies in both the SALP and the AJSP
when determining applications. This often requires a balancing and weighting of
policies in the two Plans.
Recent rural housing planning appeal decisions by Scottish Government Reporters
have given greater weight to Policy COMM5 of the Ayrshire Joint Structure Plan,
over some countryside policies contained in the South Ayrshire Local Plan. As a
result, the Planning Service is applying greater weight to Policy COMM5 in determining
planning applications for houses in the countryside.
Policy COMM5 is supportive of rural housing in a wider range of circumstances than
the corresponding SALP policies. For example, there is greater support for new housing
within existing housing clusters and for houses that are required to support rural
To help interpret Structure Plan and Local Plan policy for different types of rural
housing proposals a guidance note has been produced by the Planning Service. This
can be downloaded via the following link: Rural Housing Policy Guidance