Supplementary Planning Documents, Guidance and Policy Statements

Supplementary Planning Documents (SPDs)

Affordable Housing

The Affordable Housing SPD sets out in detail MVDC's approach to the implementation of the Core Strategy Policy CS4: The Provision of Affordable Housing. This is an important document for all those considering new housing development in the district. The Affordable Housing SPD was updated in July 2014 and again in January 2018 to reflect changes to national planning policy and affordable housing strategies. The January 2018 update includes a Viability Checklist to guide developers who wish to submit viability evidence in support of a planning application (see Appendix 5 of the Affordable Housing SPD). The Viability Checklist sets out the information required by MVDC, in a structured format, to assist with the efficient processing of applications. 

An Addendum to the SPD was published in 2016 and updated in 2019.  This covers the application of vacant building credit and current site thresholds for the inclusion of affordable housing, following the 2014 Written Ministerial Statement and the 2019 GNP. 

Further information can also be found on the CIL and Housing Affordable Housing Contributions page. 

Built-Up Areas Character Appraisal

The Built-Up Areas Character Appraisal SPD (2010) provides a character appraisal for the five main built-up areas in Mole Valley: Ashtead, Bookham and Fetcham, Dorking (including North Holmwood & Pixham) and Leatherhead.

Designing Out Crime

The Designing Out Crime SPD (2011) promotes a practical and co-ordinated approach to development management, highlighting best practice in the field of community safety and designing out crime.


The Landscape SPD (2013) identifies important characteristics of the landscape throughout the district, focusing on rural areas and landscape setting of towns and villages. The SPD provides general guidance on landscape issues and how they should be addressed by developers and those responding to planning applications. It will assist with the implementation Core Strategy Policy CS13: Landscape Character. 

Larger Rural Village Character Appraisal

The Larger Rural Village Character Appraisal SPD (2013) covers six villages: Beare Green, Brockham, Capel, Charlwood, Hookwood and Westcott. It analyses the character and landscape setting of each village, as well as providing general guidance on character issues. It will assist with the implementation Core Strategy Policy CS14: Townscape, Urban Design and the Historic Environment. 


Conservation Area Appraisals & Management Plans 

MVDC has produced four heritage appraisal documents for guidance purposes:

  • Dorking Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plan (2010)
  • Leatherhead Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plan (2010)
  • Great Bookham Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plan (2011), and;
  • Little Bookham Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plan (2011).

Design Guidance for House Extensions

Good design is desirable both for its own sake and to enhance the built environment. Poor design is often a reason for public opposition to new buildings. MVDC has published Design Guidance for House Extensions (2000) to help to achieve well designed house extensions. 

Mole Gap to Reigate Escarpment Special Area of Conservation

The Mole Gap to Reigate Escarpment Special Area of Conservation (SAC) is an area of Europe-wide significance for its nature conservation value. It covers 888 hectares of the North Downs, including Norbury Park, Headley Heath, White Down and Box Hill. 

Further development in the vicinity of the SAC needs to be carefully managed to ensure important features are not placed at risk by increased recreational pressure. For this reason, Core Strategy Policy CS15 safeguards a buffer zone extending 800m beyond the boundary of the SAC. Within the buffer zone, there is 'a presumption against any increase in residential or employment related development... ...unless its impact can be mitigated'. The Special Area of Conservation Guidance Note applies to development within the buffer zone as well as to major developments just beyond the buffer zone. The guidance identifies the main risks to the special nature conservation interests, the information that should be provided with planning applications, and the steps MVDC will take to make sure proposed development does not harm the SAC.

Shopfronts & Advertisements

A well designed shopfront gives a favourable first impression of a business, and if all the premises in a street are attractive, that impression can extend to the whole area. MVDC have produced a supplementary planning guidance on shopfronts and advertisements (1999) to help ensure good design can flourish and that local character is protected.

Trees on Development Sites

Trees are a vital and integral component of the built environment therefore when considering proposals for development it is important to take into account the effect such proposals may have on existing trees and explore opportunities for new planting. The Trees on Development Sites Supplementary Guidance Note provides a more comprehensive resume of the particular requirements MVDC is likely to have regarding trees on development sites. The guidance also details the ways in which MVDC will seek to maintain and enhance the contribution trees make to the quality of the built environment.

Vehicular & Cycle Parking

Surrey County Council is the Highways Authority for Mole Valley providing guidance on highways issues including parking. They have produced Vehicular and Cycle Parking Guidance (2018) which sets out parking standards and levels of parking provision expected from new developments. 

Policy Statements

Policy Statement for 1-41 Lower Road, 33-35 Lower Road and 2 The Mount, Fetcham

On 29 October 2002, MVDC adopted a Policy Statement for the above addresses (a map is included in the Policy Statement). This Policy Statement does not have the status of a Local Plan policy or SPD, however was formally adopted by the Council following a public consultation process and it is regarded as a material consideration in the consideration of planning applications in the affected area. The Policy Statement is therefore made available for those making or commenting on planning applications.

Interim Policy Statement on Employment Land

On 5 December 2017, MVDC agreed an Interim Policy Statement on Employment Land be published and subsequently taken into account as a material consideration in the determination of planning applications.