Documents to download

The Commons Library has published several briefings on planning and housing which provide detailed background to the topics to be covered in this debate. In particular, see the following:

– The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) – which applies only to England – was first published in 2012. It provides the framework for producing Local Plans for housing and other development, which in turn provide the background against which applications for planning permission are decided.This briefing examines some of the main changes in the updated National Planning Policy Framework (published in July 2018 with some minor amendment in February 2019, and updated in May 2019 following a consultation.

What next for planning in England? The National Planning Policy Framework

Summary of some of the main changes to the NPPF’s provisions

– The 2015 Government’s ambition was to secure 1 million net additions to the housing stock by the end of the Parliament which was expected to be in 2020. The Housing White Paper, Fixing our broken housing market (February 2017) described a number of initiatives which, taken together, are aimed at securing a step-change in housing supply.

The current Conservative Government was elected in 2017 with a manifesto pledge to meet the 2015 commitment to deliver 1 million homes by the end of 2020 and to “deliver half a million more by the end of 2022.” The manifesto said that, if elected, the Government would deliver on the reforms proposed in the Housing White Paper.

The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) was renamed the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) in January 2018. The Single Departmental Plan was updated on 23 May 2018 – the plan sets out how the Government intends to achieve an increase in housing supply and “and put us on track to deliver 300,000 net additional homes a year on average:”

Stimulating housing supply – Government initiatives (England)

– This briefing paper considers key trends in housing supply in the UK and goes on to focus on some of the key barriers and potential solutions to increasing supply in England. It summarises proposals set out in the Housing White Paper published in February 2017 and has been updated to take account of subsequent developments:

Tackling the under-supply of housing in England

– The Localism Act 2011 allows parish councils and groups of people from the community, called neighbourhood forums, to formulate Neighbourhood Development Plans and Orders, to guide and shape development in a particular area. This briefing examines these powers and reviews of their effectiveness and describes recent changes to relevant provisions in the National Planning Policy Framework:

Neighbourhood Planning

The Housing and Planning Act 2016 (HPA 2016) received Royal Assent on 12 May 2016. This briefing paper outlines progress in implementing the Act’s provisions:

Implementation of the Housing and Planning Act 2016

– There is no third-party right of appeal in planning law. If the local planning authority (LPA) rejects a planning application, then it is only the disappointed applicant who has the right of appeal. Neighbours and others who are concerned about permission granted for local developments do not have a right of appeal.

A recent review did not recommend “wholesale changes”, as those might be “counterproductive”, but set out recommendations grouped under themes of earlier engagement by all parties, greater certainty about timescales and harnessing technology to improve efficient and transparency. These reforms would (the executive summary said) reduce overall times from receipt to decisions for cases decided by the Inspector to between 24 and 26 weeks, from a current average of 47 weeks.

Planning Appeals

– This briefing paper considers how affordable housing is defined in England and looks at key trends in the affordability of different tenure types. It examines the supply of affordable housing and the role of Housing Benefit in enabling households to access and retain affordable housing:

What is affordable housing?

In addition, this pack contains news items, press releases, Parliamentary material and useful links for further reading. 

Documents to download

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