Policy SD 2: Sustainable Development Principles

  1. All development will be expected to:
    1. Provide or contribute towards identified infrastructure, services or facilities. Such infrastructure should precede the delivery of other forms of development, wherever possible;
    2. Contribute positively to an area’s character and identity, creating or reinforcing local distinctiveness in terms of:
      1. Height, scale, form and grouping;
      2. Choice of materials;
      3. External design features;
      4. Massing of development - the balance between built form and green/public spaces;
      5. Green infrastructure; and
      6. Relationship to neighbouring properties, street scene and the wider neighbourhood;
    3. Respect and, where possible, enhance the landscape character of the area. Particular attention will be paid toward significant landmarks and landscape features;
    4. Respect, and where possible enhance, the significance of heritage assets, including their wider settings;
    5. Avoid the permanent loss of areas of agricultural land quality of 1, 2 or 3a, unless the strategic need overrides these issues;
    6. Be socially inclusive and, where suitable, integrate into the local community;
    7. Avoid high risk flood areas, or where necessary provide appropriate mitigation measures;
    8. Use appropriate design, construction, insulation, layout and orientation to create developments that:
      1. Are resilient to climate change;
      2. Minimise energy use;
      3. Use natural resources prudently;
      4. Promote the use, recovery and recycling of materials;
      5. Integrate or allow future integration of renewable energy technologies;
      6. Discourage crime and anti-social behaviour;
      7. Minimise trip generation;
      8. Minimise waste and pollution; and
      9. Are water efficient
  2. In addition to the above principles, residential development will be expected to:
    1. Provide open space, of an extent, quality, design and location appropriate to the development and the local community;
    2. Provide access to a range footnote 37 of forms of public transport, open space and key services and amenities footnote 38; and
    3. Incorporate measures to encourage travel by sustainable modes of transport such as walking, cycling and public transport.
  3. In addition to the principles in point 1 above, employment development will be expected to:
    1. Provide an attractive setting to development in order to create an attractive and successful place to work, with minimum impact on the surrounding area;
    2. Provide a flexible development that can serve a range of sizes and types of employment; and
    3. Maximise opportunities for access and deliveries by a range of forms of sustainable transport.
  4. In addition to the principles in point 1 above, retail/town centre development will be expected to:
    1. Provide high quality pedestrian and cycle facilities, including secure cycle parking;
    2. Be located so as to reduce the need to travel, especially by car, and to enable people as far as possible to meet their needs locally; and
    3. Provide good town centre linkages, by walking, cycling and public transport, if the development is located on the edge or out of town.


9.4 Planning, through the Local Plan Strategy, has a key role in addressing the impacts of climate change in terms of both mitigation and adaptation. The Local Plan Strategy sets out a minimum requirement of 36,000 new homes and the accommodation of a minimum of 380 hectares of employment land by 2030, which could considerably raise the amount of carbon emissions and impact on the wider environment unless adequate measures are introduced to combat this. Directing development to the most sustainable locations and thus improving accessibility and reducing the need to travel through the spatial strategy will have a significant impact on climate change at the local level. However, individual development proposals must themselves also play a key role in mitigating the causes and adapting to the effects of climate change.

9.5 Table 9.1 provides a guide to the appropriate distances for access to services and amenities. A methodology for the assessment of walking distances has been informed by that of the North West Sustainability Checklist (now revoked), which has been backed by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). These distances are actual distances using public highways and footpaths. The distances are considered appropriate for the region and have been used for the purposes of informing the Sustainability Appraisal and the accessibility of proposed developments.

9.6 In assessing the distances to services and amenities, consideration will also be given to the quality of the pedestrian, cycle or other transportation routes.

Table 9.1 Access to services and facilities
Public Transport
Bus Stop 500m
Public Right of Way 500m
Railway Station 2km where geographically possible
Open Space
Amenity Open Space 500m
Children's Playground 500m
Outdoor Sports 500m
Public Park and Village Green 1km
Services and Amenities
Convenience Store 500m
Supermarket 1km
Post Box 500m
Post Office 1km
Bank or Cash Machine 1km
Pharmacy 1km
Primary School 1km
Secondary School 1km
Medical Centre 1km
Leisure Facilities 1km
Local Meeting Place / Community Centre 1km
Public House 1km
Child Care Facility (nursery or crèche) 1km

Key Evidence

  1. Determining the Settlement Hierarchy
  2. Cheshire East Infrastructure Delivery Plan
  3. Cheshire East Sustainability Appraisal
  4. ‘Made’ Neighbourhood Plans including Sandbach, Audlem, Brereton and Bunbury.

(Footnote 37) As a guide, a range is considered to be within the maximum recommended distance of a bus stop; a multi-functional open space; and a convenience store, in addition to four or more other services or amenities, dependent on location

(Footnote 38) Recommended distances are set out in Table 9.1 below. The council will have regard to proposed improvements to services and amenities that are to be brought forward as part of the development.

Policy information


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