The Government’s proposals for ‘radical reform’ of the Planning system in England were published in August 2020. These involve a new approach to Local Plans as prepared by local planning authorities.
The Government’s stated aim is to streamline and simplify the preparation and adoption of Local Plans (which under present arrangements can take 3-4 years). Under the proposed new system Local Plans would categorise all land within their area under three ‘zones’ of ‘Growth’, ‘Renewal’ and ‘Protected’ (such as Conservation Areas).
A national set of generic development management policies would be introduced to replace much of the detailed policy set out in Local Plans.
The White Paper says that neighbourhood plans should be retained under a new planning system. But the document is wholly unclear what scope would remain for these ‘community-led’ plans. While there are only 19 neighbourhood plans in London which have been adopted as part of the development plan for their area, there are now over 2,000 in place and used daily by planning authorities across England.
With our experience of having a neighbourhood plan in force, with its policies tailored to our part of the Borough, we think it would be a serious backward step for such plans to have their scope reduced in the future.
The site allocations in the 2018 StQW Plan are now strongly supported by RB Kensington and Chelsea. The three Local Green Spaces designated as part of the Plan remain as importnat to us as when first propose din 2015.
The Government’s White Paper can be downloaded here
We have submitted a response from the StQW Forum. This argues the case for neighbourhood plans to retain their present scope and powers. A copy can be downloaded as a PDF below