Planning guidance and background information supporting the West Lothian Local Development Plan 2018 (LDP 1)
There is a comprehensive suite of statutory and non-statutory planning guidance supporting the Adopted West Lothian Local Development Plan. Guidance enables the council to expand upon the policies and proposals contained within the LDP and provide more detail. The process of preparing planning guidance includes an element of public consultation which presents the opportunity for anyone who may wish to make comment to do so. Representations submitted to the council are acknowledged and reported to elected members and are taken into account before the guidance is finalised and adopted.
Planning guidance provides additional detail on specific subject areas and explains how planning policies will be implemented. It is produced as either 'statutory' supplementary guidance (SG) or 'non-statutory' planning guidance (PG).
Statutory SG must have been referenced within the Local Development Plan, gone through consultation and approved by Scottish Ministers. Once adopted, SG has statutory weight in the determination of planning applications and forms part of the plan.
Non-statutory PG is not subject to approval by Scottish Ministers and is not part of the development plan. As a consequence it does not have the same weight as SG but is nonetheless a 'material consideration' when deciding planning applications.
- Approved April 2017 / Adopted February 2019
- Approved October 2018 / Adopted March 2019
- Approved November 2017 (amended February 2019) / Adopted April 2019
- Approved October 2018 / Adopted April 2019
- Approved October 2018 (amended November 2018 and May 2019) / Adopted May 2019
- Approved October 2019 / Adopted January 2020
- Approved October 2019 / Adopted February 2020
- Approved June 2020 / Adopted September 2020
- Approved January 2021 / Adopted May 2021
- Approved April 2021 / Adopted June 2021
- Approved May 2021 / Adopted July 2021
- Approved January 2021 / Adopted August 2021
Drafted guidance (pending adoption)
At this time there is no guidance imminently pending consideration for adoption by Council Executive. This part of the site is updated as and when appropriate and you may therefore wish to periodically check to see if any new guidance has been added.
Thank you for your interest in the meantime.
A suite of 'Supplementary Planning Guidance - SPG' was previously prepared to support the West Lothian Local Plan 2009 (WLLP). When the WLLP was replaced in September 2018 by the West Lothian Local Development Plan (LDP 1) these SPGs ceased to have formal status but they nevertheless remain material considerations until replaced and can be viewed under the tab 'Archived Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG)' at Superseded West Lothian Local Plan 2009 (WLLP) .
Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) Screening
West Lothian Council commissioned Land Use Consultants led by a steering group including Scottish Natural Heritage to undertake a review of the local landscape designations which had been identified in the West Lothian Local Plan (2009). The review was published as a background paper to the Main Issues Report of the West Lothian Local Development Plan and informed preparation of the Plan which was adopted in 2018.
The Statements of Importance (SOIs) for each special landscape area are within chapter 7 of the Review. The finalised boundaries of the Special Landscape Areas are however those shown in the Proposals Maps of the adopted LDP.
The West Lothian Landscape Character Classification is an in-house document prepared as a follow up to the West Lothian Local Landscape Designation Review.
It was also a background paper which informed preparation of the West Lothian Local Development Plan and in particular the text of policy ENV 1 Landscape Character and Special Landscape Areas.
This is a regional-scale, broad strategic study which was published in 2011. The Landscape Capacity Study provides base-line information for the West Lothian Landscape Character Classification and acts as a background technical study for the preparation of policy guidance on how to accommodate future wind energy developments.
The Forth Bridge was officially designated as a World Heritage Site on 5 July 2015 by UNESCO. As part of the protection of the landscape setting for the World Heritage Site status of The Forth Bridge, West Lothian Council is tasked with applying planning protection for Viewpoint 8: Newton (lay-by, A904) and Viewpoint 9: Viewing Tower at the House of the Binns.
The Wind Energy Data Map is not a 'live' resource but consolidates information at intervals throughout the year. For the most current information regarding the location of turbine applications determined or in the planning system it is therefore advisable to contact the Development Management team directly by email.
Core paths can be paths, waterways or any other means of crossing land to facilitate, promote and manage the exercise of access rights under the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003, and are identified as such in the council's Core Paths Plan. The Core Path Plan provides a basic framework of routes for the purpose of giving the public reasonable access throughout a particular area for walking, cycling, horse riding and other non-motorised activities.
Descriptions of paths in the Core Path Network
The Plan has been split into pdf files and includes map detail and descriptions of paths in the Core Path Network.
- The Core Paths Plan Map
- Introduction, Methodology, Candidate Core Path Criteria and Informal Consultations
- Response to Informal Consultations
- The Core Path Diagram 2030
- Core Path Network
- Detailed Map Index - use to identify which map you wish to view for paths and their description
- Objectives and Policies Next Steps, Glossary and Description of Photos
For more information on the paths which each of the above plans covers, go to the West Lothian's Core Paths Plan webpage.
In 2008 the council commissioned the West Lothian Retail Capacity Study from consultants Halcrow. The purpose of this was to consider convenience shopping provision and make recommendations on the adequacy of retail floor space provided within West Lothian in relation to current and projected available expenditure. It is a material consideration to be taken into account in the determination of planning applications.
The many country houses spread across West Lothian contain locally important historical aspects of Scottish history, as well as archaeological remains. These houses, that are often several hundreds of years old, provide unique records of social, cultural and economic change at both local and national levels and greatly contribute to the national identity.
Within Scotland's country house estates, gardens and woodland policies are generally enclosed grounds with gardens surrounding a country house, developed usually for both pleasure and productive purposes.
The booklet link contains information on 23 country houses and small mansions across West Lothian alongside historical maps and an indication of the extent of the original estate boundary. Country house estates and woodland policies listed have in many cases retained their original character and are worthy of protection through general planning policies.
However, they are in the majority private residences and their curtilage extends to parts of the estate policies and hence Land Reform Act access rights do NOT apply and the privacy of these homes must be respected.
In 2004 West Lothian Council, in partnership with Scottish Natural Heritage, commissioned the Scottish Agricultural College (SAC) to prepare a report on the soils of West Lothian. The report takes the form of a desktop study and seeks to increase awareness and understanding of the soils in West Lothian.
If you have any questions relating to planning guidance, SEA Screening, background information or just want to provide feedback and comments on our service, please email the Development Planning & Environment team at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also write to us at Development Planning & Environment, West Lothian Civic Centre, Howden South Road, Livingston, West Lothian EH54 6FF or phone 01506 280000.