Developing the Planning Approach

This section sets out key principles in planning for sport, the arts and culture; considers the application of the NPPF; offers advice on strategic collaborative working; and gives guidance on developing Local Plan policies and actions for improving cultural, arts and sporting opportunities and provision through the development management process. Section 6 sets out advice and information for specific sectors in greater detail.


The key guiding principles for practitioners when planning for culture, arts and sport include:

  • To adopt an inclusive partnership approach with the public, private and third sectors.
  • To be clear about intended outcomes from the outset, and to be clear about how these outcomes are to be fed into the planning process, whether through a cultural strategy, an action plan, an infrastructure study, or a supplementary planning document.
  • To base decisions on local evidence on the quality and quantity of existing provision, and to extend opportunities to participate in, and engage with, cultural, arts and sporting activities.
  • To align decisions with the strategic priorities and plans of the local authority.
  • To ensure that planning for culture, the arts and sporting opportunities fits into wider community services and infrastructure planning processes and timeframes.

Figure: Opportunities to influence positive planning for culture and sport