A blog about planning, planning law and planning policy


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.

Government recognises the age of the presumption in favour of development

Yesterday the Government issued its “Myth-buster” on the National Planning Policy Framework.

Readers of this blog and other articles by me will know that I have been pointing out for some time that the presumption in favour of development is nothing new and can be traced back to 1923 (see for example my article on “Third Party Rights of Appeal” in the January Journal of Planning and Environmental Law). It underpins the modern planning system and stands hand in hand with the effective nationalisation of development rights implemented by the 1947 legislation. I have written to ministers pointing this out –  it is important that those who operate the system understand its history and it seemed extraordinary to me that ministers were not using this in answer the claim that the presumption in favour of sustainable development was “new”.

At last the Government has picked this up saying in answer to the second myth (that the NPPF is developers’ charter) “From the birth of modern planning in 1947 there was a presumption in favour of development”.  Now whilst you might have thought they would have given the presumption its full gravitas,  here is the link to the Government’s Myth Buster


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