Details hearings of a vast planning document that will determine the next 15 years of house building in the district have been announced.

The Independent Examination of Epping Forest District Council’s Local Plan starts on Tuesday, February 12.

They will see the 11,400 home plan scrutinised by an independent examiner, with members of the public and development companies called on to have their say.

With space limited at the Civic Offices, there are arrangements for residents to view the proceedings via webcast.

Hearings will be live to view on a range of devices from PCs and Macs to mobile phones and tablet. They will also be available as recordings on the Council website for later viewing.

Opening sessions are expected to be very busy with 30 representatives scheduled to speak on the first day, leaving little room for other observers in the Council’s Committee Rooms.

However, residents can also watch a live stream of the proceedings in the Council Chamber.

Parking at the Civic Offices is also limited. Anyone planning to attend the hearings in person is strongly advised to come by public transport or use one of Epping’s other Pay and Display carparks in Cottis Lane and Bakers Lane.

Acting Chief Executive Derek Macnab said: “While it may be possible to squeeze more residents into the Committee Rooms for later hearings, the first few sessions will be full of speakers, leaving little room for observers.

“If you don’t have internet access, it may be worth coming to the Council Chamber but for anyone else, watching live from your computer or mobile phone is by far the best option.”

The full list of hearing dates and documents is available online at

Planning Inspector Louise Phillips MA (Cantab) MSc MRTPI will conduct the examination of the Epping Forest District Local Plan.

An extra date has been added to the hearings, with a session on habitat conservation and species regulation now scheduled for May 21.

Derek Macnab added: “The Council is hosting the examination but we do not run it.

“The Planning Inspector is in charge and she will hold complete discretion over the proceedings. Speakers have already been confirmed.

“No one else attending the hearings will be allowed to speak.”