Update on Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill

16th May 2022

We attended a useful virtual session last week led by Joanna Averley, Chief Planner (Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government) on the topic of ‘Planning in the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill’.  

The session was an introduction to some proposed changes to the planning system by the Government. Whilst there are details to be added and lots of consultations to go through, the First Reading by Government shows a wide variety of potential alterations. Some highlights included:  

  • New procedure for amendments to planning applications 
  • Changes to enforcement immunity timescales, to 10 years only 
  • National Planning Policy to have the same status as Development Plans and the test for exceptions to the policy requiring material circumstances “strongly” indicating otherwise. 
  • All  LPAs to have a Design Code for their area  
  • Heritage legislation to apply more widely to World Heritage Sites, Registered Parks and Gardens, Scheduled Ancient Monuments, etc. 
  • Requirement for public consultation on certain applications  
  • Community Infrastructure Levy to be replaced subject to consultation, potentially based on GDV and the value of a property when sold  
  • Consultation on LPA Fees to increase 35% for major applications and 25% for minor applications – seeking a better service  
  • Powers to require commencement of development and completion, at the LPA level, for certain applications   
  • Removal of 5-year land supply relevance if there is a current local plan in play (adopted within the past 5 years)  
  • Requirement for details of option agreements to be held at the Land Registry. 

 

Edgars will be monitoring how the Government advances this Bill, through the steps of Parliament, to see which parts are passed or altered, and how this changes the planning system.  

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