Decision details

Design guide

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


Purpose: to approve the joint design guide


Cabinet considered the head of planning’s report on a Joint Design Guide.  Following the Council’s decision to pursue a joint local plan with Vale of White Horse District Council, work had commenced on a joint design guide.  If adopted, the joint design guide would become a supplementary planning document to the council’s existing, adopted local plan, and also to the joint local plan once that had been adopted.  It would guide the public when designing new development, and would assist officers and members of the Planning Committee in determining planning applications. 


A draft joint design guide had been subject to public consultation.  The report set out the consultation results and proposed changes to the design guide.  Cabinet was asked to adopt the Joint Design Guide. 


Cabinet welcomed the new Joint Design Guide, believing that it would provide clearer guidance to all users.  In particular, Cabinet was pleased that the new guide was an interactive, online publication, which could be updated quickly as planning legislation changed.  Cabinet also welcomed the changes suggested following the Joint Scrutiny Committee meeting, which had been published as a supplement alongside the Cabinet agenda. 


It was further noted that the Climate and Ecological Emergencies Advisory Committee would review the new guide once adopted.  Any suggested improvements could be implemented by the head of planning under delegation if they were only minor changes.  In the case of major changes, these would have to be subject to the next review of the guide and be subject to public consultation.  However, Cabinet noted that any such changes would require the Vale’s agreement also, as it was a joint guide. 


Cabinet thanked the officers and councillors involved in this project for their work. 




(a)    adopt the Joint Design Guide for South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse district councils as a supplementary planning document, subject to the changes set out in the amendment note following the Joint Scrutiny Committee on 20 June 2022; and


(b)    authorise the head of planning, in consultation with the Cabinet member for planning (South) and the Cabinet member for corporate services and transformation (Vale), to make necessary minor amendments or typographical corrections to the supplementary planning document prior to publication and undertake any factual updates thereafter (e.g. web links and live neighbourhood plan maps). 

Report author: Jake Bassett, Marta Bou Fernandez

Publication date: 07/07/2022

Date of decision: 23/06/2022

Decided at meeting: 23/06/2022 - Cabinet

Effective from: 02/07/2022

Accompanying Documents: