Examination in Public

Before it can be adopted, Richmond’s Local Plan is subject to an independent Examination in Public by a Planning Inspector to assess whether it is ‘sound’.

Planning Inspector

The Secretary of State has appointed Inspector Andrew Seaman BA (Hons) MA MRTPI from the Planning Inspectorate to carry out an independent Examination of the Richmond Local Plan. He will consider whether or not the Local Plan is ‘sound’, based on the criteria set out in paragraph 182 of the National Planning Policy Framework.

The Local Plan will be considered ‘sound’ if the Inspector concludes that it is:

  • positively prepared, meaning that the plan is prepared based on a strategy which seeks to meet objectively assessed development and infrastructure requirements. This includes unmet requirements from neighbouring authorities where it is reasonable to do so and consistent with achieving sustainable development;
  • justified, meaning that the plan should be the most appropriate strategy, when considered against the reasonable alternatives, based on proportionate evidence;
  • effective, meaning that the plan should be deliverable over its period (in this case 15 years) and based on effective joint working on cross-boundary strategic priorities; and
  • consistent with national policy, meaning that the plan should enable the delivery of sustainable development in accordance with the policies in the Framework

The Inspector will also consider whether the Local Plan has been prepared in accordance with the Duty to Cooperate, and whether it meets the requisite legal and procedural requirements.

In order to do so, the Inspector will assess the Local Plan, the evidence base on which it was created, as well as all of the representations submitted during the consultation phases.

Programme Officer

We have appointed a Programme Officer, Charlotte Glancy, to manage the administrative and procedural matters of the examination process. She will act as a liaison between the Council, the Inspector, and participants in the Examination. She will serve as the first point of contact for anyone who has made representations during the Local Plan consultation stages and is therefore entitled to participate in the Examination.

If you made representations on the Local Plan Publication version, the Programme Officer will contact you on behalf of the Inspector with further information. Her contact details are:

Charlotte Glancy
C/O Banks Solutions
Flat 3 Stanmore House
118-120 High Street
RH14 9QS

Email: bankssolutionsuk@gmail.com
Telephone: 07519 628 064 or 01403 783 276

Examination hearings

The hearing sessions for the Examination of the Local Plan will start at 10am on Tuesday 26 September 2017. The purpose of the hearings is for the Planning Inspector to examine matters relating to the ‘soundness’ of the plan in more detail. These matters are identified in the main issues and questions (pdf, 176 KB) paper prepared by the Planning Inspector.

The hearings will be held at:

York House
Richmond Road

View our map of York House (pdf, 167 KB) for instructions on how to get to the venue.


The timetables below give an overview of the scheduled hearings. Other than the first day, which will commence at 10am, morning sessions will start at 9.30am and afternoon sessions will begin at 2pm. There will be a break for lunch at about 1pm, and afternoon sessions are expected to finish at approximately 5.15pm. Short breaks will be taken mid-morning and mid-afternoon. 

Please note, however, the length of each session is liable to vary depending on the nature of the issues. Every effort will be made to keep to the timetable but late changes may be unavoidable. Priority will be given to starting the debate on each matter at the appointed time, and it may be necessary to extend the discussion in the afternoon session. The Programme Officer will inform the participants of any late changes to the timetable, but it is the responsibility of the participants to keep themselves up to date with the arrangements and programme.

Week 1
Date Session (start time) Main issues
Tuesday 26 September Morning (10am) Spatial Vision and Strategic Objectives (to incorporate legal compliance) (pdf, 93 KB)
Tuesday 26 September Afternoon (2pm) Community Facilities (pdf, 90 KB)
Wednesday 27 September Full day (9.30am) Housing (pdf, 105 KB)
Thursday 28 September Morning (9.30am) Site Allocations (SA 1-17) (pdf, 86 KB)
Week 2
Date Session (start time) Main issues
Monday 9 October Full day (9.30am) Character and Design, Green Infrastructure, Climate Change (pdf, 97 KB)
Tuesday 10 October No hearing scheduled  
Wednesday 11 October Morning (9.30am) Borough Centres and Employment/Economy (pdf, 90 KB)
Wednesday 11 October Afternoon (2pm) Transport, Implementation and Monitoring (pdf, 93 KB)
Thursday 12 October Full day (9.30am) Site Allocations (SA 18-28) (pdf, 88 KB)
Friday 13 October TBC Contingency to accommodate overruns

The Planning Inspector has prepared a guidance note (pdf, 113 KB)
to explain the procedural and administrative matters relating to the examination process, which includes more information about the format of the hearings. Please also see guidance produced by the Department for Communities and Local Government for frequently asked questions and more general information about the examination process (GOV.UK).

Examination documents

We have created an index of examination documents. It contains links to the:

  • Correspondence with the Inspector
  • Examination statements from the Council and other parties
  • Evidence supporting the Local Plan

What happens next

The length of the examination process can vary depending on a range of factors, including the complexity of the plan’s subject matter and the level of interest that it has generated.

At the end of the hearings, the Inspector will indicate the timescale of next steps.

Once the Planning Inspector has submitted his report on the Local Plan to the Council, this will be made available on our website.

Following the examination, if the Inspector considers the Local Plan to be ‘sound’, and that it meets all the legal and other requirements, it can be formally adopted. 

Further information

If you would like more information, please contact the Local Plan Team.

Email: localplan@richmond.gov.uk
Telephone: 020 8891 1411

Updated: 5 October 2017