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Showing posts from February, 2019

Appeal decision: Secretary of State rejects site due to landscape concerns - Highnam Neighbourhood Plan

In the appeal decisions I've reviewed to date, the outcome has often been disappointing for the Neighbourhood Plans involved.

However, in a recent appeal case the Secretary of State applied the policies of a Neighbourhood Plan to refuse outline planning permission for 40 dwellings, despite a lack of housing land supply.

The planning appeal for a 50 dwelling scheme at land south of Oakridge, Highnam, Gloucestershire, was dismissed by a Planning Inspector, after being refused planning permission by Tewkesbury Borough Council. The appeal decision was called in by the Secretary of State (SoS), The Right Honourable James Brokenshire MP, who agreed with the Planning Inspector's recommendation.

The decision was issued 20 December 2018, under appeal reference APP/G1630/W/17/3184272.
'Tilted balance' The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) applies a presumption in favour of sustainable development where there are no relevant development plan policies, or the policies whi…

How the Housing Delivery Test can affect Neighbourhood Plans

The Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has today published the results of the Housing Delivery Test (HDT).

**NEW - try my Housing Delivery Test Checker tool to see results for your area**

The HDT was first mooted by the Housing White Paper, back in February 2017. The HDT calculates the number of new homes built, as a percentage of the number of homes needed over the past three years. MHCLG has published a HDT figure for every council area in England, and indicates it will re-calculate the HDT annually.

The purpose of the HDT is to hold local authorities to account over the supply of new housing.

Where the HDT shows the delivery of new homes has fallen below 95% of the district or borough's housing requirement over the previous three years, the council should prepare an Action Plan to assess the causes of under-delivery and identify actions to increase delivery in future years.

Where the HDT shows a district's housing delivery is less than 85%, the c…

Linton Neighbourhood Plan: What scope does the Council have to modify a Neighbourhood Plan?

I was reviewing recent appeal decisions, and came across the case of the Linton Neighbourhood Plan. The plan had previously been subject to a legal challenge, which highlights the scope a local authority has in modifying a Neighbourhood Plan once it has been independently examined. Specifically, this article discusses the modifications set out in the Examiner's Report, following the Independent Examination and prior to the referendum - not substantive changes differing from the recommendations of the examiner, or undertaken at a different stage in the process.
Planning Appeal In the appeal decision, a Planning Inspector has granted outline planning permission for 26 dwellings at Ridge Meadows, Northgate Lane / Tibgarth, Linton, West Yorkshire. The site is located within the area of Leeds City Council, and within the Linton Neighbourhood Area. The decision was issued on 14 December 2018, under appeal reference: APP/N4720/W/17/3186216.

In summary, Leeds City Council is unable to de…

Secretary of State overturns Planning Inspector's decision due to density concerns

Normally, planning appeals are determined by Planning Inspectors, but in some circumstances appeals may be 'recovered' for determination by the Secretary of State (SoS). The current SoS for Housing, Communities and Local Government is James Brokenshire MP.

In December 2018, the SoS issued a decision on a recovered appeal at Woburn Sands, Buckinghamshire. The proposal for residential development of up to 203 dwellings, a doctor’s surgery, open space and landscaping, together with pedestrian, cycle and vehicular access, was initially refused by Milton Keynes Council, and following appeal, granted permission by a Planning Inspector. However, the SoS recovered the appeal and overturned the Inspector's decision, dismissing the appeal.

Details of the case are available on the Planning Inspectorate's website, using case reference: APP/Y0435/W/17/3169314.
Appeal site & Neighbourhood Plan The appeal site is a 15.2 hectare, greenfield site, located outside the development bo…

Need for homes trumps valued landscapes. Review of appeal decision: Farnham Neighbourhood Plan

An appeal decision at land west of Folly Hill, Folly Hill, Farnham (appeal reference: APP/R3650/W/17/3171409) illustrates the delicate and complex issue of determining whether a Neighbourhood Plan is or is not 'out-of-date' and the effect this has on applying the 'tilted balance'.

The appeal decision was issued in December 2018, granting planning permission for 96 dwellings, including 38 affordable, with areas of open space, Suitable Alternative Natural Greenspace (SANGS); children’s play area; SuDS attenuation; highway works and a new access. 
The appeal site is located within the Borough of Waverley, Surrey, and the Farnham Neighbourhood Area. Development Plan The Farnham Neighbourhood Plan (FNP) was made in July 2017, and was therefore less than a year and a half old at the time the decision was issued.
During the course of the appeal, the Waverley Local Plan Part 1 (WLPP1) was adopted. This is, in effect, 'half' of a Local Plan setting out strategic polici…