Vision and Objectives

10.1 Introduction

As we start the review of the Local Plan for the Broads, it is prudent to begin with the long-term vision and objectives for the Broads, which are fundamental aspects of the Local Plan.

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10.2 Vision

The Broads Plan and the Local Plan for the Broads share the same Vision for the Broads. The Broads Plan 2022-27 includes the following Vision for the Broads:

Biodiversity is at the heart of nature recovery. Our natural environment and the beneficial goods, services, and cultural values it provides from food and energy to landscape character and recreation are in good condition, used fairly and sustainably, and valued by society. In particular, the precious nature of plentiful, clean, fresh water as a fundamental resource is understood and respected by all.

We are meeting the challenges of climate change and sea level rise, and the carbon reduction targets of ‘net zero’ by 2040, with well-maintained soils that retain and increase stored carbon.

Wildlife is flourishing and habitats are maintained, restored, and expanded. Land and water are managed in an integrated way, with local and landscape-scale management that creates resilience and space for nature and agriculture, enabling us to adapt to changing environmental, economic, and social needs. The area’s environmental history is better appreciated through understanding its sediments, rocks, and landforms.

The past and present importance of the waterways for navigation, biodiversity and recreation is recognised and cherished, and the asset is protected, maintained, and enhanced.

This living, working, ‘big skies’ landscape is notable for its natural beauty, distinctive local character, and historic significance. People of all ages, abilities and circumstances enjoy it as a place to live and work, as a place of escape, adventure, learning and tranquillity, and as a source of national pride and identity. Local communities are active in decisions about their future, and sustainable living is seen in action. There is a buoyant rural economy and a viable, well-used public transport network, and local housing need is being met.

The Broads National Park is forever recognised as fundamental to our prosperity and our mental and physical health and wellbeing and is forever treasured as a unique and special place that provides a breathing space for the cure of souls.

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10.3 Current objectives

The Local plan objectives relate back to the Vision; the objectives are as follows:

  • OBJ1. The Broads remains a key national and international asset and a special place to live, work and visit.
  • OBJ2. There are areas of true tranquillity and wildness and dark skies, giving a real sense of remoteness.
  • OBJ3. The Broads is a unique, highly valued and attractive environment where the landscape character and setting is protected, maintained and enhanced.
  • OBJ4. The rich and varied natural environment is conserved, maintained, enhanced and sustainably managed. Nature can recover (more, bigger, better, joined).
  • OBJ5. The coastal section of the Broads is used and managed in a beneficial and integrated way for people and wildlife using nature-based solutions.
  • OBJ6. Water quality is improved, and water is managed using appropriate measures to increase capture and efficiency, prevent pollution and reduce nutrients. Flood risk to people, property and landscapes is managed effectively.
  • OBJ7. ‘Climate-smart thinking’ minimises future adverse impacts and makes use of opportunities in an area vulnerable to a changing climate and sea level rise. The Local Plan helps the path to net zero, adaptation and resilience.
  • OBJ8. The area’s historic environment, archaeology and cultural heritage are protected, maintained and enhanced.  Local cultural traditions and skills are kept alive.
  • OBJ9. The housing needs of the community are met including safe, warm, energy efficient homes in the right place. The Local Plan addresses the issue of second homes.
  • OBJ10. Development and change are managed to protect and enhance the special qualities of the Broads as well as the needs of those who live in, work in and visit the area.  The Broads Authority maintains close cooperation with the Local Planning Authorities adjoining its executive area.
  • OBJ11. The Broads offers communities and visitors opportunities for a healthy and active lifestyle and a ‘breathing space for the cure of souls’.
  • OBJ12. There is a buoyant and successful rural economy.
  • OBJ13. The Broads is renowned for sustainable tourism and supports a prosperous tourism industry.
  • OBJ14. People enjoy the special qualities of the Broads on land and on water. Access and recreation are managed in ways that maximise opportunities for enjoyment without degrading the natural, heritage or cultural resource. Navigation is protected, maintained and appropriately enhanced, and people enjoy the waterways safely.
  • OBJ15. The Broads continues to be important for the function, identity and recreation of the local community as well as over a wider area.
  • OBJ16. Waste is managed effectively so there is no detriment to the environment.

Appendix 3 shows how the objectives compare to the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. It also links to a document that assesses the policies against the UN SD Goals.

11. The rest of the Preferred Options Local Plan

The rest of the Preferred Options Local Plan includes proposed policies. Alternatives are also discussed and a summary of the Sustainability Appraisal for those policies and alternative options is also considered.