DEV15 - Supporting the rural economy

The Plymouth and South West Devon Joint Local Plan has now been adopted! To find out more please visit the Plymouth and South West Devon Joint Local Plan: Adoption page.

Visit the interactive Plymouth Plan to see other policies that affect decision making across Plymouth City including the Council and its partners.

Support will be given to proposals in suitable locations which seek to improve the balance of jobs within the rural areas and diversify the rural economy. The following provisions apply:

  1. Appropriate and proportionate expansion of existing employment sites in order to enable retention and growth of local employers will be supported, subject to an assessment that demonstrates no adverse residual impacts on neighbouring uses and the environment.
  2. Business start-ups, home working, small scale employment and the development and expansion of small business in residential and rural areas will generally be supported, subject to an assessment that demonstrates no residual adverse impacts on neighbouring uses and the environment.
  3. Proposals should explore opportunities to improve internet connectivity for rural communities where appropriate.
  4. Support will be given to the reuse of suitable buildings for employment uses.
  5. The creation of new, or extensions to existing, garden centres or farm shops in the open countryside and unrelated to a settlement will only be permitted if the proposed development is ancillary to, and on the site of, an existing horticultural business or existing farming operation, and provided that 75 per cent of the goods sold will be produced within the immediate and adjoining parishes.
  6. Development will be supported which meets the essential needs of agriculture or forestry interests.
  7. The loss of tourist or leisure development will only be permitted where there is no proven demand for the facility. Camping, caravan, chalet or similar facilities that respond to an identified local need will be supported, provided the proposal is compatible with the rural road network, has no adverse environmental impact and is not located within the Undeveloped Coast policy area.
  8. Development proposals should:
      1. Demonstrate safe access to the existing highway network.
      2. Avoid a significant increase in the number of trips requiring the private car and facilitate the use of sustainable transport, including walking and cycling, where appropriate. Sustainable Travel Plans will be required to demonstrate how the traffic impacts of the development have been considered and mitigated.
      3. Demonstrate how a positive relationship with existing buildings has been achieved, including scale, design, massing and orientation.
      4. Avoid incongruous or isolated new buildings. If there are unused existing buildings within the site, applicants are required to demonstrate why these cannot be used for the uses proposed before new buildings will be considered.