2. Strategic Policies




Current guidance contained in the government’s Planning Policy Guidance Note 12 – Development Plans (1999) advises that Part I of a Unitary Development Plan should provide a strategic framework which will guide development generally throughout the local authority area. Part I should not include any justification for the policies – this should be contained in Part II of the Plan along with the detailed policies which are derived from the strategic policies. PPG12 has been replaced by Planning Policy Statement 12 – Local Development Frameworks (2004), which sets out the government’s approach to the preparation of Local Development Frameworks, but still remains in operation for those development plans prepared under the Town and Country Planning (Development Plan) (England) Regulations 1999, including Barnet’s UDP.


The UDP sets out the council’s vision for the borough up to 2016 and the detailed planning policies to make these a reality. The Plan is based on the council’s own policy priorities for Barnet (as set out in the Corporate Plan and Community Strategy) and its people, and on a wider view of the trends affecting the borough as an important part of one of Europe’s few world cities.


In looking ahead the council has identified three major national and international trends with implications for its aims:

  • The growing pressures on the environment, land and social provision arising from London’s position as a world city and the effects these have for people living and working here. 
  • The shifting patterns of employment and economic activities, moving away from manufacturing to services and from physical production towards a technology-based economy. These new patterns increasingly demand higher skills, but lead to fragmentation of the labour market and greater social polarisation.
  • The increasing pressure on policy makers to resolve conflicts and issues arising from the ever wider range and intensity of economic, social and environmental problems in urban areas.

Barnet’s location, diverse communities and areas mean that it will be affected by all these factors in a complex way.


Guiding Principles


The guiding principles in the preparation of the borough’s Unitary Development Plan have been:

  • To plan for sustainable development:
    • To ensure that planning decisions are made in accordance with the principles of sustainable development. The meaning of ‘sustainable development’ used by the council is the meeting of the essential needs of people today, without destroying the environment for future generations who will depend on it to meet their own needs.
  • To enhance the quality of the built and natural environment:
    • Ensuring that new development improves the quality of life for all Barnet’s residents.
    • Barnet will play its part in meeting the needs of London as a whole where this does not compromise the need to protect the borough’s natural and built environment.
  • To sustain local communities:
    • New housing will be provided which meets local needs.
    • New housing must be accessible and there must be provision of housing which is affordable.
    • Adequate provision of education, health and welfare services will be needed to meet the requirements of Barnet’s diverse communities.
    • Ensuring Barnet’s town centres are places that are attractive and safe, providing for local needs and where job opportunities are created.
  • To improve education and employment opportunities:
    • The council will encourage inward investment.
    • Opportunities will be created to help local people access local jobs.
  • To maintain and improve Barnet’s transport network system:
    • Integrating land use and transport planning in Barnet.
    • Improving access to employment and services.
    • Increasing the choice of available modes of transport by locating new development near existing public transport routes and by maintaining and enhancing these routes.
  • To promote the regeneration of the Cricklewood, Brent Cross and West Hendon area:
    • The objective will be to create a new sustainable urban place in keeping with its strategic position in London, providing opportunities for major improvement to public transport, job creation and economic development, a high quality residential environment and a range of social provision for all parts of the community.

The UDP will ensure that planning decisions are made in accordance with the principles ofsustainable development, particularly the need to encourage development that providesopportunities, services and prosperity today which continues for future generations. Policiescontained within the UDP will encourage a more efficient re-use of land; protection of naturalresources including the Green Belt; preservation or enhancement of the built environment; and thedevelopment of well-connected, higher-density, mixed use schemes in appropriate locations whichreduce the need to travel to jobs, shops and other services. The council adopted the ‘Three Strands Approach’ (November 2004) to protect the Green Belt and suburbs, whilst addressing the demands for additional housing accommodation within the borough. This council policy aligns with the UDP.


Barnet is part of a much greater whole and therefore the council will work positively with other authorities and organisations to advance the above approaches. In particular, the council will work with the Greater London Authority (GLA) and the Mayor, to promote Barnet’s part in meeting the challenges faced by London as a whole.


This is the vision for Barnet that has informed the preparation of the new UDP, which is aimed at putting the council’s policies into practice.


Strategic Policies



One overall theme that runs through the whole Plan is ‘sustainable development’. Planning can positively promote more sustainable forms of development through, for example:

  • Locating development close to the public transport network in order to reduce the need to travel by car;
  • Using brownfield sites where possible for new development;
  • Protecting areas of high landscape and species value; or
  • Minimising pollution. 

The council is committed to ensuring that planning decisions are made in accordance with
principles of sustainable development. 

POLICY GSD - Sustainable Development View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that development and growth within the borough is sustainable. 


To facilitate many of the aims of the Plan the council will promote mixed use developments. Mixed use developments can help to create attractive places for people to live, work and relax in one area. Such developments can contribute to the aims of sustainable development through, for example:

  • Reducing the need to travel;
  • Encouraging the use of public transport;
  • Maximising the efficiency of land use;
  • Adding to the vitality of areas;
  • Offering opportunities for energy saving; and
  • Through creating a safer environment for communities.

POLICY GMixedUse - Mixed Use View Map of this site ?

The council will encourage development proposals which incorporate a mix of uses within buildings or areas in town centres and other appropriate locations. When considering mixed uses the council will take account of:

  • The character and diversity of the existing area;
  • The feasibility of a second use given the nature of the first use and the site characteristics;
  • Any potential nuisance to other users; and
  • The accessibility of the site by a range of modes of transport.

Environmental Resources

A key aim for the council is to maintain and improve the quality of the borough while ensuring that there will be sufficient resources to meet the needs of future generations in Barnet. To do this it is important that environmental resources are protected and any potential adverse impacts arising from development are avoided. Therefore the council is committed to conserving energy,1 reducing the amount of waste produced within the borough and increasing recycling, reducing pollution to the air, water and land and minimising nuisance from light and noise. Wherever possible, schemes to upgrade the environment will be undertaken with the full involvement of the local community.

1The government is developing a national standard for measuring the environmental performance of new development, particularly housing. This standard will provide a cross-cutting appraisal system, including analysis of energy consumption, water usage, ecological quality, waste generation and other relevant factors, of the overall environmental quality of new development. This appraisal system will eventually be a Code for Sustainable Homes/Code for Sustainable Buildings (for more information, see the DEFRA website at http://www.defra.gov.uk/news/2004/040727a.htm).


For certain new developments, environmental statements are necessary and are an effective vehicle for ensuring that the likely effects of the development on the environment are fully appraised and taken into account before a decision is made. An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is required for all development of a certain type listed in Schedule 1 of the Town and Country Planning(Environmental Impact Assessments) (England and Wales) Regulations 1999. Additionally, the council will use its discretionary powers to require an EIA for development of a certain type listed in Schedule 2 of the Regulations, where a test has shown that there is expected to be a significant effect upon the environment. The council will, in conjunction with interested and experienced local and regional organisations, devise criteria to be assessed in such statements. Guidance and procedures are set out in Circular 02/99 Environmental Impact Assessments, and the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessments) (England and Wales) Regulations 1999.

POLICY GEA - Environmental Impact View Map of this site ?

The council will take full account of all aspects of potentially significant environmental impacts when assessing development proposals. Where a development is listed under Schedules 1 and 2 of the relevant Regulations and is likely to have a significant effect on the environment, the council will require an environmental statement to be provided by the developers.

POLICY GEnergy - Energy Efficiency View Map of this site ?

In planning for development in the borough the council will seek to conserve resources and minimise pollution by:

  • Encouraging energy and water efficient developments;
  • Promoting the use of renewable energy;
  • Seeking to reduce traffic generation; and
  • Improving air, water and land quality.

POLICY GWaste - Waste Disposal View Map of this site ?

The council will encourage waste management practices that are carried out in accordance with the following waste management principles:

  • The waste management hierarchy – reduce, re-use, recover (recycling, composting, energy recovery) and dispose;
  • The best practical environmental option; and
  • The proximity principle.

POLICY GLand - Re-use of Brownfield Land View Map of this site ?

The council will encourage the reuse of previously developed land and existing buildings wherever possible. Before permitting development on greenfield land, the council will wish to see that the opportunities for development on derelict, contaminated, underused or other vacant land have been fully explored.


The Built and Open Environment

The borough has an attractive and high quality environment containing some areas of special character and significant tracts of open land. Barnet has 18 conservation areas, over 1,300 listed buildings, 2,466 hectares of Green Belt (GB) and 690 hectares of Metropolitan Open Land (MOL). The council considers it important to protect particular areas of the borough such as conservation areas, listed buildings, heritage land, GB, MOL, nature conservation areas, woodlands, archaeological remains and landmarks. The council will firmly resist any erosion of the open nature of Green Belt and Metropolitan Open Land. These open areas help to define the borough’s urban areas and good land management will be promoted, the uses within them strictly controlled and landscaping enhanced. Additionally, the design of new developments should contribute towards a high quality, safe and secure environment.

POLICY GBEnv1 - Character View Map of this site ?

The council will protect and enhance the quality and character of the borough’s built and natural environment.

POLICY GBEnv2 - Design View Map of this site ?

The council will require high quality design in all new development in order to enhance the quality of the built and open environment, to utilise environmentally friendly methods of construction, to improve amenity, to respect and improve the quality of environment of existing and future residents, to encourage investment in the local economy and to help meet the council’s objectives of sustainable development and ensuring community safety.

POLICY GBEnv3 - Safe Environment View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that new development provides a safe and secure environment for people to live and work in.

POLICY GBEnv4 - Special Area View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to protect, by preserving or enhancing, buildings, areas, opens spaces or features that are of special value in architectural, townscape or landscape, historic, agricultural or nature conservation terms.

POLICY GBEnv5 - Accessible Environment View Map of this site ?

The council will encourage an accessible environment for everyone, including people with disabilities, the elderly and those with young children.

POLICY GGreenBelt - Green Belt View Map of this site ?

The council will safeguard the permanence and integrity of the borough’s Green Belt. 

POLICY GMOL - Metropolitan Open Land View Map of this site ?

The council will safeguard the permanence and integrity of the borough’s Metropolitan Open Land.


Leisure, Recreation and Tourism

The council recognises the role that leisure, recreation and tourist facilities can play in community regeneration. It therefore intends to improve the quality of leisure, recreation and tourist facilities in the borough. The council will promote and safeguard arts, culture, entertainment and tourist facilities for the benefit of residents and visitors. Through the Plan the council will aim to ensure that there are adequate sports and recreation facilities to meet the needs of residents by protecting existing facilities and encouraging new ones where the need arises. Informal recreation is also important and therefore the council will protect existing open spaces and create new ones in areas of deficiency.

POLICY GL1 - Sport and Recreation View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that an adequate supply of land and buildings is available for sport and recreation, arts, culture and entertainment to meet the needs of residents in the borough.

POLICY GL2 - Tourist Facilities View Map of this site ?

The council will promote the development of new or improved tourist facilities in the borough. 

POLICY GL3 - Outdoor Recreation View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to protect and promote the creation of public open spaces for formal and informal outdoor leisure and recreation in the borough.



The quality of life and the environment will be affected by the extent and means of movement of people and goods within and through the borough. The council recognises the importance of transport links to enable freedom of movement and facilitate business and social activity in Barnet. The council aims to reduce the need to travel, lower reliance on the car and promote the use of sustainable alternatives, such as cycling, walking and public transport. In addition, the council aims to protect people and businesses from the negative effects of traffic and parking and ensure safe and efficient transport systems with access for all.

POLICY GLoc - Reducing Need to Travel View Map of this site ?

The council will encourage developments in locations which will reduce the need for travel, promote the use of public transport and other non-car modes and reduce the journey length of those trips which are made by car.

POLICY GRoadNet - Road Network View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that roads within the borough are used appropriately according to their status in the defined road hierarchy.

POLICY GParking - Parking View Map of this site ?

The council will apply parking standards and policies to regulate parking in the borough in order to restrain the growth of car use and minimise the inconvenience and danger caused by indiscriminate parking.

POLICY GNonCar - Sustainable Transport View Map of this site ?

The council will encourage the use of more sustainable modes of travel such as public transport, cycling or walking.



Ensuring everyone has a place to live and that any substandard accommodation is improved is a key priority for this council. It is important that through this Plan adequate provision is made for new housing to cater for the projected increase in the number of households to 2016. It will also be necessary to ensure that there is a suitable mix of housing by type, tenure and affordability to meet the differing needs of all those living in Barnet. New development should be designed to respect local character and take account of any standards set out in this Plan. The Plan will safeguard the pleasant character of Barnet’s residential areas and take every opportunity to enhance the environment of these areas. The council accepts that Barnet should provide 17,780 net additional homes between 1997 and 2016. This figure should not be seen as prescriptive or inflexible. 


The council aims to adopt a sequential approach to housing (where developers will be required to submit evidence that brownfield sites had been considered), which should help to decrease pressure for development on greenfield sites, preserve the environment and create more sustainable developments.

POLICY GH1 - Housing Supply View Map of this site ?

The council will seek the minimum provision of 17,780 additional homes to contribute to local and regional housing provision between 1997 and 2016 through:

  • Allocating sites in the UDP for residential development;
  • Redevelopment of existing sites;
  • Conversion of large dwellings into small units;
  • Conversion of space above shops and offices into residential accommodation;
  • Development of infill sites in residential areas, and
  • Bringing empty homes into use and non self-contained accommodation.

POLICY GH2 - Dwelling Mix View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that the mix of dwellings in terms of type and size accords with the needs of the borough’s population.

POLICY GH3 - Affordable Housing View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that half of the 17,780 additional homes to be delivered between 1997 and 2016 are affordable, meeting the needs of residents unable to buy or rent housing on the open market.


Community Services

Access to a wide range of community services and facilities is important. The predicted rise in thenumber of households will have implications for the provision of community services. Certaindevelopments may increase pressure on existing facilities, thereby creating a need for theirexpansion or the provision of new facilities. In order to meet the community needs of Barnet, existing community facilities will be protected and new provision will be encouraged.

POLICY GCS1 - Community Facilities View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that an adequate supply of land and buildings is available for community, religious, educational, health and social care facilities in order to meet the needs of residents in the borough.


Employment, Business and Industry

The economic prosperity of the borough depends on land being available to accommodate a wide range of employment developments. It is important to provide local jobs which meet local needs and to encourage competitiveness in the local economy. To ensure land is available, the council aims to safeguard Barnet’s primary industrial sites and business parks, to provide appropriate locations for storage and distribution uses and to enable the development of premises for small and starter businesses for which there is a projected demand.

POLICY GEMP1 - Protecting Employment Sites View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to consolidate and promote employment uses (B1, B2, or B8) on the borough’s primary industrial sites and business parks and safeguard them against redevelopment for non-business/industrial uses.

POLICY GEMP2 - Promoting Business Activities View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to provide and promote sites and areas appropriate for the needs of all business, industry and warehousing activities whilst giving careful regard to the environment.

POLICY GEMP3 - Maximising Job Creation View Map of this site ?

In new employment generating development, the council will seek the creation of the maximum number and quality of jobs, consistent with other policies in the Plan.

POLICY GEMP4 - Protecting Employment Land View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to retain land that meets strategic requirements for small, medium and large scale industrial users. If there is no realistic prospect of re-use purely for employment purposes, mixed use development for employment and housing will be a priority.


Town Centres and Retailing

The borough contains a large number of district and local town centres and London’s only Regional Shopping Centre at Brent Cross. Regional Planning Guidance Note 3 (RPG3)2 states that the Brent Cross Regional Shopping Centre should be supported and any future development should be linked to an enhanced role for public transport to serve its catchment area.

2 RPG3 was replaced by the London Plan in February 2004. 


Town centres and retailing are crucial to the social, economic and environmental wellbeing of the borough. The council is committed to the regeneration and revitalisation of its town centres and it recognises their importance as engines of the local economy, significant employment locations and potentially focal points for a sustainable pattern of development in the borough. To ensure that the vitality and viability of Barnet’s town centres are maintained and improved, the following policies will apply.

POLICY GTCR1 - Retailing and Town Centres View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that new retail and other major trip-generating development is located so as to sustain and enhance the vitality and viability of the borough’s town centres.

POLICY GTCR2 - Range of Retail Services View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that all residents of the borough have ready access to a wide range of goods, services and facilities in their nearest town centres.

POLICY GTCR3 - Enhancing Town Centres View Map of this site ?

The council will seek to ensure that the quality of the environment of town centres is enhanced.


Cricklewood, Brent Cross and West Hendon Regeneration Area

The Cricklewood, Brent Cross and West Hendon Regeneration Area presents a unique, strategicopportunity in the capital which will enhance this major world city. The government’s strategicguidance for London (RPG3 1996)3 identified Cricklewood as one of London’s major regenerationopportunities. The council wishes to see this regeneration opportunity realised within the Plan period, to create a new and important centre of mixed use activities, and to secure new jobs and facilities for communities in Cricklewood and the surrounding areas. An important element of this regeneration will be improving access to the area, substantially by public transport, walking and cycling.

3 RPG3 was replaced by the London Plan in February 2004.


The council is committed to the development of vast areas of brownfield land as its flagship regeneration project. A planning policy framework will be developed to set out the council’s vision for the area and to ensure that urban renaissance is secured and delivered over the lifespan of the Plan.

POLICY GCrick - Cricklewood, Brent Cross and West Hendon Regeneration Area View Map of this site ?

The Cricklewood, Brent Cross and West Hendon Regeneration Area, as defined on the Proposals Map, will be a major focus for the creation of new jobs and homes, building upon the area’s strategic location and its key rail facilities. All new development will be built to the highest standards of design as well as to the highest environmental standards. A new town centre, developed over the plan period, will be fully integrated into the regeneration scheme.


Implementation of the UDP

It is important that the council reviews its Plan and monitors the effectiveness of policies. The council will identify any changes needed as a result of government guidance, economic and social trends and will ensure that the UDP is kept up to date throughout its lifetime.

POLICY GMon - Monitoring View Map of this site ?

The council will monitor and review the effectiveness of policies in this Plan in the light of:

  • Trends and patterns of population change, economic activity, impacts on the environment, and development and physical conditions in the borough and surrounding areas;
  • Changes to government planning policy and strategic guidance for London; and
  • As a result the council will bring forward alterations to the policies and proposals of the Plan as necessary, in consultation with the local community.

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Disclaimer: Please note: the version of the UDP displayed here is for informational purposes only - the legal copy of the plan remains the paper copy printed by Barnet Council. If in doubt, or in cases of discrepancy, please contact Barnet Council for advice.