A blog about planning, planning law and planning policy

Disclaimer

The information on this blog is not intended to be advice, legal or otherwise. You should not rely on it and I do not accept liability in connection with it. If you do have a planning law question on which you would like advice, seek legal advice from a suitably qualified solicitor. Specific advice should be sought for specific problems.

Shall we just wreck the planning system?

Theresa Villiers MP

Theresa Villiers MP has put down 19 amendments to the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill due to commence its Report Stage on Monday 28 November. She is supported by large numbers of Conservative MPs such as Sir Iain Duncan Smith, Sir Roger Gale, Nadine Dorries, Bob Blackman, Tim Loughton and Bob […]

In keeping, out of keeping, shoddy or beautiful

Michael Gove

I was struck by a small paragraph on the front page of The Times last Tuesday (15 November if anyone wants to check). It said “Developers seeking planning permission for new homes with designs out of keeping with the local area may have the projects “called in” by the government and vetoed. See […]

Improving PiPs before they squeak

Hello. It has been a year since I last posted and some may have been wondering where I have been. Nothing sinister, but amongst other things I was applying to become an Examining Inspector, that is, one of the Planning Inspectors dealing with applications for permission for Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (or NSIPs) under the […]

Is bulldozing post-war estates really the answer to deep-seated social problems?

Writing in The Sunday Times on 10th January, the Prime Minister said “I’ve put the bulldozing of sink estates at the heart of turnaround Britain”. He claimed that housing estates bring together “deep social problems – the blocked opportunity, poor parenting, addiction and mental health problems — that mean so many are unable to fulfil […]

Can planning alone sort out the housing shortage?

I have been wondering for some time whether there is something other than increasing the supply of planning permissions which is needed to address the housing shortage and affordability. The Government has pledged to construct 1,000,000 houses during the life of this Parliament, by 2020 therefore. They also pledge 200,000 Starter Homes in the […]

Bill Bryson is wrong again

Today’s Times carries an extract form Bill Bryson’s new book “The Road to Little Dribbling; More Notes From a Small Island”. Under the headline “We ought to be appalled to see what is happening to the green belt”, the extract is a paean for the retention of the green belt. But it slips between green […]

Fixing the Foundations

Sajid Javid

The Secretary of State for Business Innovation and Skills, Sajid Javid, launched proposals for productivity on Friday 11th July, in a Command Paper called “Fixing the Foundations”. The parts which got press coverage were the reforms to planning.

In outline, the major changes are to adopt a zoning system for brownfield […]

“Faith based planning?”

The Expanding Universe

Ouch. My planning law colleague Stephen Ashworth of Dentons has put up a post today on their UK Planning Law Blog with this title. He reports that the Government’s changes last November to make development easier for small developers by reducing the thresholds for affordable housing and tariff style contributions are […]

Use it or lose it – the Lyons Housing Review spells out the proposal

In mid- October, The Lyons Housing Review published its report. Sir Michael Lyons, a former chief executive of three local authorities, was asked by the Labour Party to look into the causes of the shortage of new houses and suggest action to address the problem. One of the suggested solutions is “Use it or lose […]

Miliband’s private renting reforms – adverse impact on the housing market

A few days ago the Labour Party announced proposed reforms of the rented housing market. In short there are three reforms. 1 – landlords would no longer be able to charge tenants the agents’ letting fees. 2 – rent increases would be limited – ceiling yet to be decided. 3 – the standard tenancy would […]