Hertfordshire County Council are responsible for planning for waste, minerals (mostly sand and gravel quarries) and for services they provide like schools, libraries and roads.

However they are working on a joint strategic plan for South West Hertfordshire together with:

Dacorum Borough Council

St Albans City and District Council

Three Rivers District Council

Watford Borough Council

Hertsmere Borough Council

The Joint Strategic Plan (JSP) will provide a long-term blueprint for the area to 2050. It will be able to consider and address issues that cross council boundaries and set out a strategic vision for the area. It will also help guide future plans and strategies by setting out high level policies on topics such as climate change, infrastructure, environmental protection, employment and housing.

The draft Vision and Objectives of the SW Herts Joint Strategic Plan 2050 consultation closed in November 2022.  The comments received are currently being reviewed and will be summarised into a consultation report and published on the website. In the meantime, A Technical Note – Establishing a South West Hertfordshire Settlement Hierarchy, has been published.  All of the authorities have now endorsed a vision and objectives to guide future work.   The latest news is here.

Each district council will still be responsible for preparing their own local plan, but a joint strategic plan will be a critical stage in local planning work across South West Hertfordshire, setting the strategic framework and shared priorities within which individual local plans can be prepared.

Current Local Plans in Hertfordshire include:

Broxbourne Borough Council

The Broxbourne Local Plan 2018-2033 was adopted in June 2020 and is available here.

Dacorum Borough Council

The Local Plan 1991-2011 was adopted in 2004 and should be read alongside the adopted Core Strategy and the Site Allocations DPD. The Core Strategy (adopted 2013) does not replace all of the policies contained within the Local Plan 1991-2011. Many of the policies within the Local Plan have been ‘saved’ and will continue to inform planning policy until they are formally superseded or cancelled.

Dacorum are in the process of preparing a new Local Plan for the borough and have considered all comments submitted during the consultation on the Emerging Strategy for Growth (2020-2038) which closed in February 2021. The consultation on the  Dacorum Local Plan (2024-2040) Revised Strategy for Growth (PDF 4MB) closed on 11 December 2023. All comments, plus further information on the consultation, can be viewed on Let’s Talk Dacorum. The Council are now considering the feedback received and will prepare a summary report for spring 2024. A full Statement of Consultation with the Councils responses to the comments and where changes have been made to the Plan documents and proposals, will be published alongside the Publication version of the Local Plan at its next formal stage of consultation in late 2024. Following this final phase of consultation, the Local Plan will be submitted to the Secretary of State by mid 2025, followed by a public examination.

East Herts Council

The East Herts District Plan was adopted in October 2018. Further details can be found here.

Hertsmere Borough Council

The Hertsmere Local Plan (2012-2027) is made up of four parts:

  • Core Strategy adopted January 2013.
  • Elstree Way Corridor Area Action Plan adopted July 2015;
  • Site Allocations and Development Management (SADM) Policies Plan adopted November 2016;
  • Policies Map.

More information about these documents can be found here.

Hertsmere were in the process of producing a new Local Plan and a consultation will be held in Spring 2024. The new draft Local Plan needs to be submitted to the Secretary of State by June 2025, with adoption of the final version of the new Local Plan, covering up until 2040, expected by the end of 2026.

North Hertfordshire District Council

The North Hertfordshire Local Plan 2011-2031 was adopted in November 2022 and replaces the saved policies of the District Plan Second Review with Alterations.

The Development Plan for North Hertfordshire consists of:

Where there is conflict between policies in different parts of the Development Plan, the most recent policy takes precedence.

The adopted Local Plan includes a policy to undertake a whole plan review by the end of 2023 at the latest.

St Albans City and District Council

The current adopted Local Plan is The District Local Plan Review 1994. This is being replaced by a new Local Plan.

A new draft Local Plan is in preparation.

The Local Development Scheme was updated in February 2024. The key dates going forward are:

Regulation 19 Pre – Submission Publication    Submission         Examination     Adoption
Oct – Dec 2024    March 2025         March 2025 – Feb 2026     March 2026


Stevenage Borough Council

The Stevenage Borough Local Plan 2011-2031 was adopted in May 2019 and sets out how Stevenage will develop in the future. It seeks to provide around 7,600 new homes, alongside new jobs and community facilities. Further information and access to the adopted documents can be found here.

Three Rivers District Council

The current Three Rivers Local Plans consists of:

The Local Plan consists of:

  • Core Strategy
  • Development Management Policies Development Plan Document
  • Site Allocations Development Plan Document
  • Gypsy and Traveller Development Plan Document

The Council is preparing a new Local Plan for Three Rivers which will provide the planning policies and proposals for future sustainable growth in the District up to 2036. The Council has recently consulted on Local Plan Regulation 18 consultation Part 4: Three Rivers’ Preferred Local Plan Lower Housing Growth Option – Protecting More Green Belt Land.

Watford Borough Council

The Watford Local Plan: A Sustainable Town 2021-2038  was adopted in October 2022 and guides the strategic approach to growth in the borough. Other supporting documents including policies maps can be viewed here.

Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council

The Welwyn Hatfield Local Plan 2016 was adopted in October 2023.  This is is now the Statutory Development Plan for the Borough. This means it has full weight (together with ‘made’ neighbourhood plans where relevant) in determining planning applications and development decisions within the Borough. The newly adopted Local Plan replaces the previous Local Plan which comprised ‘saved’ policies from the Welwyn Hatfield District Plan 2005.

For further advice or to find out how your property fits into this framework for planning in Hertfordshire please contact us.