The Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government have finally published their white paper on planning reform, after a five-month delay. The Club contributed to the original green paper last year, and have been awaiting the final announcement with some interest.
Given the present environment, the focus has been placed heavily on commercial developers and driving the economy through new building. As the Prime Minister previous stated, the goal is to “build, build, build”, and the new policy certainly is aimed to do that.
Listed properties do not get a direct mention in the consultation document that has been released, which is a little disappointing but not necessarily unexpected. When the Club met with MHCLG, they wanted to be radical, but their focus was on the core planning system and not on listed building consent. However, there are still some interesting development for private owners.
Efforts to make the planning system faster and cheaper and make resources available to properly handle planning cases, will certainly be very welcome to all listed building owners. Listed buildings need to seek planning permission far more often than non-listed neighbours, so these changes would result in a disproportionately large improvement for listed properties.
To read the full story, see the latest issue of Listed Heritage, the Club’s 160 page bi-monthly magazine. Every issue includes a dedicated section on our lobbying efforts, as well as news, features and technical guidance from across the heritage sector.
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