Planning for the future - Changes to the planning system in England

On 6th August the Government published the long-awaited White Paper on their proposed "radical" changes to the planning system in England. The reforms are intended to streamline and modernise the current process and fundamentally change how it operates. Like many recent changes, it focuses primarily on the delivery of new homes but it is not restricted just to addressing the current housing crisis. 



The key changes summarised

The principal changes are:

  • Planning permission in principle granted where the proposed land use is allocated in “growth or renewal areas’ of a Local Plan.
  • Planning applications to focus on compliance with national and local set design codes.
  • Introducing a “Community Infrastructure Levy” - to be charged as a fixed proportion of the development value above a threshold, with a mandatory nationally-set rate or rates - to fund affordable housing and other infrastructure – thereby abolishing section 106 planning obligations and the Community Infrastructure Levy.

The White Paper also proposes:

  • Technical changes to calculation of the standard method for calculating local housing need.
  • Measures to speed up the process of the delivery of local plans within 30 months
  • Making use of technology for - both applicants and local planning authorities – to make the planning much simpler and understood by the wider community in the determination of planning applications and site allocations in local plans.
  • Increased resources for Local Planning Authorities to deliver the proposed changes
  • Introduction of new development corporations.   
  • First Homes as a new tenure in the housing market with a 1,500 homes pilot delivered through the Affordable Homes Programme

These proposed changes to the Planning system if enacted will have significant implications for the delivery of new homes, jobs, and social and economic infrastructure.

See the full Planning White Paper here

Can we help?


Darren Parker

Operational Director - Planning (UK South West and Wales) +44 (0)29 2066 8662 EMAIL
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Cardiff - Callaghan Square | UK

Chris LeCointe

Director of Environmental Planning +44 (0) 1235 821 888 EMAIL
Abingdon | UK

Karen Jones

Operational Director - Planning (London) +44 (0) 20 7280 3300 EMAIL
London - Farringdon Street | UK

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