Background evidence and research

Planning policy must be based on robust evidence and a good understanding of an area and its issues. Below is a library of the evidence and research which informs the National Park's adopted planning policies and emerging policies of the local plan review.

Look at our Quick Guide for a brief explanation of the role each piece of evidence plays in the local plan.

▼ Preparing the local plan

Government has a set process for adopting a local plan, which we must follow. The following documents set out our plan for preparing and adopting a new local plan.

> Authority Monitoring Report 2016/17 - Background monitoring data on planning in the National Park

> Planning - Having Your Say 2016 (Statement of Community Involvement) - Sets out how we will involve people in the planning application and local plan review process

> Local Development Scheme 2017 - the ‘timetable’ for reviewing the local plan

Duty to Cooperate

The Authority has a statutory duty to "engage constructively, actively and on an ongoing basis" with other relevant organisations on cross boundary strategic matters. The Duty to Cooperate Scoping Report sets out who we expect to engage with throughout the development of the new Local Plan, on what matters and how and when we expect to do this.

> Duty to Cooperate Scoping Report (Draft May 2017)

▼ Strategy and Planning Applications

Topic Paper 3 - Design and the Built Environment

This Topic Paper gathers evidence and serves as a starting point for reviewing existing planning policies and developing new policies related to the historic environment.

> Topic Paper 3 - Design and the Built Environment

Topic Paper 4 - Vision and Spatial Strategy

This Topic Paper gathers evidence and serves as a starting point for reviewing the Local Plan's Vision and Spatial Strategy.

> Topic Paper 4 - Vision and Spatial Strategy

Sustainability Appraisal / Strategic Environmental Assessment (SA/SEA)

DNPA is required to ensure that the Local Plan contributes to sustainable development and integrates environmental considerations into the Plan.  This is done through a combined Sustainability Appraisal / Strategic Environmental Assessment. The first stage is to establish a baseline and identify the potential sustainability / environmental issues the Local Plan needs to address. This is then used to develop an assessment framework to test the draft strategy and policies of the Plan. These are set out in the Scoping Report which the statutory environmental bodies (Natural England, Environment Agency, and Historic England) are consulted on.

> SA/SEA Scoping Report

> Initial Sustainability Appraisal (SA) Report

Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA)

DNPA is required to identify aspects of the Local Plan with potential to effect European wildlife sites and to set out appropriate measures to avoid or mitigate these effects. This is done through a Habitats Regulations Assessment. The first stage is to identify the relevant European sites, their important features, and how the Plan might affect them. These are set out in the Screening Report which the relevant statutory environmental bodies(Natural England and Environment Agency) are consulted on.

> HRA Screening Report

If you wish to provide any feedback on the draft SA/SEA Scoping Report or HRA Screening Report, then please email your comments to by 6th October 2017

Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA)

An SFRA is used to inform decisions on where development should be located relative to flood risk and guides Local Plan policies. The Dartmoor National Park Authority SFRA was completed in 2010 and remains fundamentally relevant, an addendum report was completed in 2018 which updates and refreshes the original assessment.

> 2010 Strategic Flood Risk Assessment

> 2018 Strategic Flood Risk Assessment Addendum


> Household Income Report 2014

▼ Environment

Landscape Character Assessment (LCA)

The LCA is an assessment which identifies the features and attributes of a landscape which make it distinctive. The Dartmoor National Park LCA is used to help guide strategic planning and development management decisions to ensure the conservation and enhancement of Dartmoor's special landscape qualities. This LCA forms part of a wider programme of LCA work being undertaken on a national and Devon-wide scale.

> National Character Area Profile: 150 Dartmoor

> Devon Landscape Character Assessment

> Dartmoor Landscape Character Assessment (LCA) 2017

Landscape Sensitivity Assessment (LSA)

The Landscape Sensitivity Assessment (LSA) provides an assessment of landscape quality around ten key settlements within Dartmoor National Park and determines the landscape’s sensitivity to built development. This information can be used to inform the siting, design and scale of future development to ensure it respects and is well integrated with existing landscape character.

> Landscape Sensitivity Assessment (LSA) 2017

Topic Paper 1 - Natural Environment

This Topic Paper gathers evidence and serves as a starting for reviewing existing planning policies and developing new policies related to the natural environment.

> Topic Paper 1 - Natural Environment

Topic Paper 2 - Historic Environment

This Topic Paper gathers evidence and serves as a starting for reviewing existing planning policies and developing new policies related to the historic environment.

> Topic Paper 2 - Historic Environment

Devon County Council Climate Change Review

This report review's Devon County Council's Climate Change Strategy and provides Green House Gas (GHG) emission calculations for Dartmoor.

> A Review of Devon County Council's Climate Change Strategy

▼ Housing

Strategic Housing Market Needs Assessment (SHMNA)

Dartmoor National Park are partnered with the Plymouth Strategic Housing Market Area (comprising South Hams District Council, West Devon Borough Council and Plymouth City Council)  and the Exeter Strategic Housing Market Area (Teignbridge District Council, Exeter City Council, Mid-Devon Borough Council and Cornwall Council). In partnership these local authorities commission studies which assess the housing needs of different groups in the community and assign housing targets to meet that need.

> Plymouth Area SHMNA 2013

> Plymouth Area Housing Topic Paper 2017

> Exeter Area SHMNA 2014/15


> Commuted Sums in Dartmoor National Park 2013 (research report)

▼ Communities Services and Infrastructure

Infrastructure Delivery Plan (IDP)

The IDP identifies the National Park's infrastructure requirements to deliver development in the Local Plan. The IDP sets out what is needed, where it is needed and when it is needed. It then provides an update on the delivery of the required infrastructure to date. This is a draft IDP which will be updated to support the Local Plan Review.

> Infrastructure Delivery Plan 2018

Topic Paper 7 - Transport

This Topic Paper gathers evidence and serves as a starting point for reviewing existing and developing new policies related to transport matters.

> Topic Paper 7 - Transport

Devon Main Line Route Options

A potential new rail link between Exeter and Plymouth via Okehampton was suggested by the Peninsula Rail Task Force to better protect the South West from future rail disruptions. DNPA commissioned a scoping report to understand the key issues for the National Park. The Authority are not currently involved in discussions about this project being progressed. It would be expected that, should the project move forward, Network Rail would involve local communities in early discussions. Further information can be found in the following reports.

> Devon Main Line Route Options - DNPA Scoping Report (2015)

> Closing the Gap: The South West Peninsula Strategic Rail Blueprint (2016)

> The South West Spine: The case for greater investment across the South West Peninsula Rail Network (2013)

▼ Minerals, Waste and Energy

Local Aggregate Assessments

Local Aggregate Assessments are prepared annually by Devon County Council and include the area of Dartmoor National Park.

Local Aggregate Assessment

Topic Paper 5 - Minerals and Waste Development

This Topic Paper gathers evidence and serves as a starting point for reviewing existing policies and developing new planning policies related to minerals and waste development.

> Topic Paper 5 - Minerals and Waste Development

▼ Towns, Villages and Development Sites

See our 'Quick Guide' for a brief overview of how we consider housing sites for allocation in the Local Plan and how you can get involved in the process.

Settlement Profiles

Profiles have been compiled for each settlement in the National Park. Each profile includes population and housing statistics, an overview of services, facilities, sports pitches, play space and employment land as well as information on strategic planning policies and constraints affecting each settlement. The profiles have been revised in response to comments received from a Parish/Town Council consultation.

Local Centres

As part of the local plan review we consulted Parish and Town Councils to confirm the information in each profile is correct and to receive their views on whether current strategic policy allows the right type and amount of development to come forward in each settlement.

We are still awaiting consultation responses from Parish Councils for the below settlement profiles. To complete the consultation, please download the relevant profile, answer the questionnaire (in Word or pdf) and return it to us.

Rural Settlements

Land Availability Assessment (LAA)

The LAA is a technical exercise which assesses the amount of land that could be made available for housing or employment development. The LAA process creates a pool of sites from which appropriate development sites are chosen through the local plan process.

> See LAA page for further information

Brownfield Register

The 2017 regulations introduced the requirement for all local planning authorities in England to prepare, maintain and publish registers of previously developed land within their area that they consider appropriate for residential development (brownfield land registers). Our register is available below.

> Brownfield Register

> Interactive Map

If you wish for a site to be added to this register please contact the Forward Planning Team at