South Lakeland Local Plan Review - Issues and Options Consultation 2021

Closes 29 Oct 2021

Theme 3: Thriving Market Towns, Villages and Rural Areas - Milnthorpe (Questions 52 to 61)

Please read the Milnthorpe chapter of the Issues and Options Report and then answer the questions below.

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52. Have we identified all the relevant strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for Milnthorpe?

Read the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats


  • attractive, historic village centre
  • good range and quality of local  services and facilities (including shops, doctors, dentists, solicitors, vets, opticians) 
  • good secondary and primary schools
  • a good supply of housing and employment land allocated for development in the Local Plan
  • several larger local employers
  • good economic activity rates


  • the rate of housing and employment development is slower than some other key service centres in South Lakeland
  • The Mainline industrial estate has restricted access to the A590 and M6
  • congestion on the A6 (which is severe when the M6 is closed on occasion)
  • a number of vacant commercial premises in village square including the previous location of the SPAR shop
  • has the village square lost its sense of place
  • the weekly market is performing less strongly than previously
  • limited recent investment in public realm, marketing and signage


  • the ‘Milnthorpe Matters’ project – an initiative to promote assets and opportunities in the village
  • sites available for housing and employment offer potential for employment (c 10ha) and  housing need (c170 homes) and could develop local economy 
  • potential for a consolidated health centre, pharmacy dentist etc if a suitable site can be found
  • potential for investment in public realm and marketing
  • redefine the Market Square as a multi-functional area


  • a risk that the scale of current planned development will be insufficient to justify the high cost of improved links to the A590 and national road network
  • a risk of more buildings in village centre becoming vacant and current ones deteriorating further
  • competition from other centres with better linkages to road network, such a Carnforth
  • potential lack of investment in social infrastructure (health, community facilities), and utilities (example sewerage)
  • a risk that new development does not enhance village’s distinctive character and identity
53. Have we identified the correct features or issues on the map? Are there additional features or issues that should be included?

 The map below includes a number of key features, constraints, opportunities and issues relating to the current and possible future development in Milnthorpe. It is a snapshot of Milnthorpe now, and includes sites currently allocated for development but not yet completed.

View Map of Milnthorpe

54. Which of these policy approaches for the good planning of Milnthorpe to 2040 do you support and why?

Policy Approaches 3.4: Principles and Initiatives for good planning in  Milnthorpe to 2040

Read the policy approaches here

PA3.4/a: A review of housing sites (both those currently allocated and potential new sites) to support additional development in Milnthorpe to 2040. This will help meet housing (and affordable housing) need and build on the village’s strengths as a key service centre, serving the wider rural area. It will potentially also help support and widen the village’s offer in terms of community facilities, informal recreation, and local services and facilities including health care, education, food and drink.

PA3.4/b: A review of land allocated for business and employment to meet needs and for local business and employment needs and opportunities.

PA3.4/c: Support for identifying a suitable site for a new medical centre for Milnthorpe, with opportunity to provide several related services in one location.

PA3.4/d: More emphasis on small scale development which is sensitively located and designed in a way which protects and enhances the town’s distinctive character and landscape setting – including the setting of the Arnside and Silverdale AONB. 

PA3.4/e: More emphasis on brownfield and ‘windfall’ opportunities for development within the built-up area, including within and on the edge of the town centre. This also includes the reuse of any underused sites and supporting housing development where it can support the vitality and viability of the town centre.

PA3.4/f: Support the development of any opportunities for improving walking and cycling networks, linking key facilities, green spaces and new developments.

PA3.4/g: Support for public realm enhancements in the Square and Conservation Area.

55. What do you think the role of the town centre should be and how should its role develop in response to trends and challenges such as on-line retailing? For example, if there are less shops in future, should housing and other non-retail uses such as leisure, food and drink be encouraged? (See section 4.6.6 of the Issues and Options Report)
56. Have we identified the right open spaces that need protecting in Milnthorpe on the Policies Map (link below)?

If you feel there are other open spaces which need protection and are not included, or open spaces that merit designation as Local Green Spaces, please indicate on a map what these changes should be (using the file upload facility below).

File Upload: Map of potential changes to current open spaces

Please make sure your file is under 25MB
57. How can we complete any gaps in the green infrastructure network and cycling and walking networks in Milnthorpe? Please suggest potential links between green spaces and also within cycling and walking networks (See section 4.4.5 of the Issues and Options Report).
58. If you feel a change to the current development boundary for Milnthorpe is needed (see section 4.2.4 of the Issues and Options Report), please indicate on a map what these changes should be (using the file upload facility below).

File Upload: Map of potential changes to current development boundary for Milnthorpe

Please make sure your file is under 25MB
59. If you feel changes to the current green gap between Milnthorpe and Ackenthwaite are needed (see section 4.2.5 of the Issues and Options Report), please indicate on a map what these changes should be (using the file upload facility below).

File Upload: Map of potential changes to current green gap between Milnthorpe and Ackenthwaite

Please make sure your file is under 25MB
60. Have we correctly identified the services and facilities in the Settlement Services and Accessibility Assessment document? (See section 4.2.2 of the Issues and Options Report).

Read the Settlement Services and Accessibility Assessment here.

61. Which of these policy options for possible directions of growth for Milnthorpe do you support and why?

Policy Options 3.4: Potential Directions of Growth for Milnthorpe

Read the policy options here

PO3.4/i: Grisleymires Lane area – for employment or housing 

PO3.4/ii: Ackenthwaite – for housing 

PO3.4/iii: South Milnthorpe – for housing 

PO3.4/iv: Mainline – additional employment development, subject to review of feasibility and viability of improved road access to A590 and M6.


So far there have been no sites in Milnthorpe suggested for allocation for development in the ‘Call for Sites’ in summer 2020 (note a site in Whasset has been suggested). As part of this consultation, you can comment on sites already submitted and also suggest other sites which may be suitable for allocation in the Local Plan for housing or business development. For more information and opportunity to comment, please see section 4.2.6 in Theme 2 of the Issues and Options Report and questions 20 and 21.