England: Following various government consultations in early 2016, the Department for Communities and Local Government have announced that they are pressing ahead with legislation to create brownfield registers and introduce new planning powers that will allow Local Planning Authorities to grant permission in principle. With effect from 16th April 2017 the following legislation comes into force; The Town and Country Planning (Brownfield Land Register) Regulations 2017; and The Town and Country Planning (Permission in Principle) Order 2017.

So, what does this mean for development? Firstly, Councils will be required to keep an up-to-date, publicly accessible register of brownfield land suitable for housing development. Secondly, applicants will be able to apply for ‘permission in principle’ for residential development in the near future. The system is designed to separate decision making on ‘in principle’ issues addressing land use, location and amount of development from more complex technical details. The aim of the policy is to provide up-front certainty that the fundamental principles of development are acceptable before developers need to get into costly, technical matters. Once permission in principle is granted it must be followed by an application for technical details consent covering remaining detailed matters. A grant of permission in principle plus a grant of technical details consent equates to full planning permission.

Full guidance to the legislation, including the application process and fee schedule, is expected to be published by the Government by the end of June 2017. In the meantime, an Explanatory Memorandum further detailing the changes can be found here.

If you have any questions, or if you have a parcel of land and would like to pursue a residential development then why not call Pure Town Planning on 01202 585524 or email info@puretownplanning.co.uk for a FREE 30 minute consultation on how we can help you.