Planning guidelines on religious developments modernised

By on 10/11/2010 in News

Proposed guidelines which seek to clarify, and make consistent, planning rules surrounding places of worship in Birmingham have today been released for public consultation by Birmingham City Council.

Launched by Cllr Alan Rudge, Cabinet Member for Equalities and Human Resources, at a 'Birmingham Faith Round Table’ event, the 'Supplementary Planning Document for Places of Worship and Faith Related Community and Educational Uses' (SPD) seeks to address how the city can embrace and support the religious needs of our growing and more diverse population, while also improving the quality of life for existing communities.

Speaking about the guidelines Cllr Rudge, said “Faith groups make a very positive contribution to our society, and it is only right and proper that a diverse city like Birmingham should do all it can to embrace all communities and help them develop the key buildings and amenities they require to practice their religion”.

Replacing guidelines dating back to 2005, the document is designed to help both potential applicants and the City Council better understand the needs, nature, impact and likely success of future proposals for new religious buildings.

Recognising the important role such establishments play in not just religion, but also training, education and the social needs of citizens, the SPD looks to encourage the responsible development of new facilities in a way that protects and enhances the wider social cohesion of all communities.

Cllr Timothy Huxtable, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Transportation, said:

“By truly considering the physical needs of all faiths in the city the SPD will play a critical role in ensuring faith, religion and the spiritual needs of all communities are embedded alongside other considerations when it comes to shaping the city for the future.

Launched to community leaders at a meeting of the Birmingham Inter Faith Group last night, the SPD will now enter a period of public consultation until 24th December 2010,on the detail, with a view to a final document being formally implemented by Spring 2011.

For more details or to view a copy of the SPD go to www.birmingham.gov.uk/placesofworship.

ENDS

For more infromation please contact Simon Houltby on 0121 303 3503

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