- What are Local Place Plans?
Local Place Plans (LPPs) are a new type of plan givi
ng people an opportunity to develop proposals for the development and use of land in the place where they live. It is intended that LPPs will stimulate and encourage debate about the future of a place, enabling communities to focus on their aspirations as well as their needs.
- Why create a Local Place Plan?
LPPs provide communities with the ability to shape the appearance, form and function of the places in which they live. These plans can raise awareness and bring attention to land use issues that are experienced in a community and explore what actions can be taken to improve them. An LPP can also influence the provisions within the Local Development Plan (See Question 8). The process of preparing an LPP also provides an opportunity for communities to come together and to engage with other organisations that can help to shape their future.
- Who can create an LPP?
Any community council or other community-controlled body with a written constitution, as recognised under the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015, can prepare and submit an LPP. Your organisation does not necessarily have to be a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation and the group could be created specifically for the purpose of preparing and delivering the LPP.
- What happens if two separate community bodies create an LPP for the same area or overlapping areas?
While the legislation does not prevent multiple LPPs being created for the same area, the Scottish Government encourages people and organisations considering preparing an LPP to work collaboratively and in a joined-up way wherever possible. You will be required to submit to the Council a map of the area that your LPP covers.
- Can LPPs include proposals for the use of land or buildings?
Yes. While it is the role of the planning system to make decisions about future development, LPPs can influence the content, land allocations and overall strategy of Local Development Plans. Examples of what could be considered as development or use of land, and which might feature in a Local Place Plan, include:
- Sites which support climate change adaptation, such as renewable energy or flood mitigation
- Local initiatives for the promotion of active travel and community food growing
- Sites for housing, including for affordable housing, new or retained local employment or new tourism/community facilities
- Retaining, improving, and expanding quality open space and green/blue infrastructure, and play facilities
- Conservation of the natural/built environment
- Improvements in the town/neighbourhood centre
- Support for a national development, as featured in the National Planning Framework.
- What sort of issues cannot be covered by an LPP?
There may be issues that are important for communities, but they are not considered as development and so would not normally be covered in LPPs. Some examples include the following matters:
- Litter management and dog fouling
- Specific improvements to public transport (routes and timetables)
- Proposals which do not fundamentally impact on the long-term use of land, such as occasional activities/events using existing facilities, spaces and places.
Community bodies may, however, wish to consider how these issues can be appropriately represented and addressed in a separate or specific part of the LPP.
- What is the difference between a Local Place Plan and a Local Development Plan?
LPPs are led by communities directly. This means that any consultation, engagement, drafting, resourcing and funding of the LPP process would be the ultimate responsibility of the lead community group. They would also lead on the implementation of any agreed actions.
Local Development Plans on the other hand are a statutory plan prepared by the local planning authority. Note that, as a result of the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019, the Development Plan now consists of both the East Dunbartonshire LDP and the National Planning Framework (which is prepared by the Scottish Government).
- What status do LPPs have?
Once an LPP has been registered by the Council it will be a material consideration in the determination of planning applications in that area.
To ensure that the measures within the LPP have as much status as is possible, the LPP should be submitted to the Council in enough time to allow the aspirations and actions in the LPP to be considered in the preparation of the next Local Development Plan. The Council will then assess the provisions of the LPP alongside the requirements of the National Planning Framework, the LDP Evidence Report, the Regional Spatial Strategy, representations from wider stakeholders and any other relevant considerations in preparing the plan. Where appropriate to do so, the proposed LDP will include the provisions within the registered LPP – giving them enhanced status as part of the development plan.
- Do LPPs have to take into account other plans?
Yes. In preparing the LPP, the community body must have regard to certain other plans. These are:
- The Local Development Plan for the land, or any part of the land, to which the LPP relates
- The National Planning Framework
- A Locality Plan published for the area to which a proposed Local Place Plan relates.
Though not a legal requirement, the community body may want to refer to a range of other documents which can provide context and evidence for the LPP. Such documents (not an exhaustive list) might include:
- Community-led plans which have been previously prepared
- Where no Locality Plan is in place, the Local Outcomes Improvement Plan
- Other national/regional plans and strategies which may be relevant, such as the Regional Spatial Strategy
- Planning permissions already granted which may have a significant impact on the LPP area.
- Can LPPs propose a different approach to that in the Local Development Plan?
Yes. LPPs must demonstrate how they have taken the National Planning Framework and Local Development Plan (LDP) into account. However, where the community body feels that the strategy, policies or allocations in an LDP should be changed, this can be proposed within the LPP. Please note that clear reasons for doing so must be provided by the community body. This will not immediately change the status of the LDP, but will allow the planning authority to consider the proposed change in the next review of the LDP or give the change some weight as an additional material consideration in the determination of planning applications.
- How are LPPs different from Locality Plans?
Locality Plans (previously called Place Plans in East Dunbartonshire) are multi-agency plans prepared by a partnership of bodies to target resources in our most deprived neighbourhoods to reduce inequality. In communities where there is already a Locality Plan in place, any LPP that is prepared by the community should look to link with the Locality Plan as much as possible.
- Who is responsible for delivering an LPP?
The community body itself should take primary ownership of delivering the actions, however, there may be some actions that require to be delivered through other mechanisms or organisations. For example, it may be that the LPP outcomes feed into the Local Development Plan and will subsequently be delivered through the assessment and consenting of planning applications.
It is important that you have clear governance in place to ensure your plan can be delivered. You may want to continue with your Steering Group or create a new 'Delivery Group'. It is important that the delivery of the plan remains a clear responsibility which someone takes charge of.
- What assistance can the Council provide?
Whilst the community body will lead on preparing the LPP, the Council can provide assistance in a number of ways, including:
- Understanding the national and local policy landscape that the LPP will need to fit with
- Understanding the regulatory requirements to ensure that the LPP can be 'registered'
- Using and preparing spatial data (GIS)
- Identifying potential funding sources
- Undertaking community engagement
- Organisational governance.
- What other information and resources are available to help communities to prepare LPP’s?
There are lots of sources of information to help you decide if an LPP is right for your local area/organisation and to help you get work underway:
- Planning Circular 1/2022: Local Place Plans (external link opens in new window)
- Our Place and Local Place Plans – How to Guide (external link opens in new window)
- PAS – LPP Resources for Communities (external link opens in new window)
- What level of consultation will be expected for LPPs?
On submission of LPPs, community bodies will need to provide a statement setting out the level and nature of support for the plan, with evidence to demonstrate this. Whilst the regulations do not set any specific standards, we would expect any engagement undertaken as part of the process to prepare a LPP to be as inclusive as possible, ensuring that everyone has an opportunity to be involved.
- What is the process for registering the LPP?
Once community groups have prepared their LPP it can be submitted to the planning authority to be ‘registered’. This means that the LPP can be treated as a material planning consideration in the assessment of any planning applications within the area it covers. In your submission to the Council, information demonstrating the following must be provided:
- That the LPP has been prepared by a constituted Community Body as defined in the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 or by a community council
- That the proposals within the LPP relate to the use of land and new development
- How other stakeholders have been involved and the perceived level of local support for the provisions within the LPP
- A map setting out the area covered by the LPP
- Notification of each Elected Member covering the LPP area and any relevant community councils (when the submitting group is not itself a community council or where the area is covered by multiple community councils)
- That the LPP has taken into account the provisions of the National Planning Framework, Local Development Plan and any relevant Locality Plans
- Where the LPP proposes to diverge from any of the above plans, a statement giving clear justification for a proposed change in approach.
Please note, the registration process will only check that sufficient information has been provided to demonstrate that the above matters have been addressed by the community body. The registration process will not assess the planning merits of the specific provisions within the LPP – this will be done either as part of preparing the next LDP or in the decision-making process for planning applications.
- What happens after the LPP is registered by the Council?
If the LPP meets all of the criteria above, the planning authority will inform the community body that it has registered the LPP and placed it on the LPP register on the Council’s website. It will at this stage form a material consideration in the assessment of planning applications.
LPPs submitted by summer 2025 will be considered for inclusion within LDP3. The outcome of this process and the extent to which the LPP influenced provisions within LDP3 will be communicated at the Proposed Plan stage.
- What happens if the Council is not able to register the LPP?
Where the Council has been unable to register the LPP, it will inform the community body of the specific requirements (listed in Question 16) where the planning authority deems there to have been insufficient evidence provided. Where possible the Council will support the group to revise the LPP or prepare additional information to enable it to be resubmitted for registering.
- Is there any funding available for communities to prepare LPPs?
Whilst there is no specific pot of money for funding the preparation and delivery of LPPs, there are various funding sources and charities whose criteria and work are relevant to improving local areas through community-led initiatives. Funding streams and organisations worth checking out include (but not restricted to):
- Investing in Communities Fund (Scottish Government) [opens in a new window]
- The Robertson Trust [opens in a new window]
- Steel Charitable Trust [opens in a new window]
- The Barrack Charitable Trust [opens in a new window]
- Esmee Fairbairn [opens in a new window]
- William Grant Foundation [opens in a new window]
- Garfield Weston [opens in a new window]
- National Lottery – Community-led Funding [opens in a new window]
- National Lottery - Awards for All Scotland [opens in a new window]
- Asda Foundation [opens in a new window]
- Coalfields Regeneration Trust [opens in a new window]
- Henry Smith Charity [opens in a new window]
- Scotland’s Towns Partnership [opens in a new window]