New Local Plan for Reading

Reading Borough Council (RBC) are consulting on the draft local plan which sets out the planning framework for Reading until 2036. The plan includes general policies on planning principles such as sustainability, green space and heritage as well as area plans.

Some sections are of particular local interest:

Whitley Street Shops

The plan states that Whitley Street is a major local centre and should retain at least 40% of its eastern frontage in A1 or A2 retail use. Other restrictions on development apply generally to similar centres:

Within district, major local and local centres, development will be permitted provided that:

  • There would be no more than 2 consecutive A5 takeaways, and no more than 30% of the length of the Key Frontage would be in takeaway use; and
  • There would be no net loss of ‘centre uses’ for ‘non-centre uses’ at the ground floor (apart from entrances to upper floors) except in exceptional circumstances. On upper floors, other uses including residential (‘living over the shops’) will be acceptable.
New homes in Katesgrove

For planning purposes Katesgrove falls within three zones; Silver Street and most of Southampton Street is in East Reading, around London Street and Crown Street is in Central Reading, but the majority is within South Reading.

The strategy for South Reading includes lots of new housing including replacing some older industrial areas. Potential sites identified include around the Makro site south of Elgar Road where 330-500 houses could be built.

Conditions are set out for this development which is adjacent to Waterloo Meadows and allotments including:

i. Ensure that there is an appropriate buffer between new residential development and any adjacent industrial and warehouse uses to ensure that there are no adverse effects on residents as a result of noise and disturbance and the visual impact of business uses;
ii. Provide a high quality landscaped boundary to Waterloo Meadows, and a landscaped green link to connect Waterloo Meadows to the vegetated area to the northeast of Elgar Road;
iii. Enhance pedestrian access between Elgar Road and Waterloo Meadows;
iv. Retain significant trees on the site wherever possible;
v. Give careful consideration to the archaeological potential of the area and be supported by appropriate archaeological assessment;
vi. Where possible, use existing accesses; and
vii.Take account of potential surface water flooding, and potentially contaminated land.

Opportunities on the Kennet

There is also a suggestion that there might be leisure and recreation uses for more of the Kennet in south Reading including Fobney Mead and land north and east of Rose Kiln Lane which could possibly become a marina.

Public Consultation

Copies of the plan are available online or can be viewed at the Civic Offices and council libraries.

Comments can be made by e-mail to:
or in writing to:

Planning Policy Team
Reading Borough Council
Civic Offices
Bridge Street

The planning policy team can be contacted using the e-mail address above or on 0118 9373337.

The consultation on the 232 page plan lasts until 5pm on 14 June 2017.

A drop in event with a planning officer will be held on 23 May 1pm – 6pm in reception at the Civic Offices, Bridge Street, RG1 2LU.


  1. New Local Plan – all papers
  2. Draft Local Plan
  3. Local Plan summary leaflet
  4. Property use classes
  5. Marina, pub and hotel proposed near Waterloo Meadows