Leadership Essentials Planning training; Design in the public sector application deadline; climate change resources survey; and more...

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August 2020

Planning Advisory Service

August 2020

What an exciting week! There is so much going on at the moment. As always, the Chief Planner’s newsletter is a good place to start. Out also, and attracting less attention than the White Paper, is a call for evidence on land control.

Our Twitter feeds have been full of what I’ve learned to call 'hot takes' from people speed-reading the White Paper. In PAS we don’t do 'hot takes'. We are going to take some time to agree an engagement strategy and roll it out to all sorts of Local Planning Authorities (LPAs) to explore how the White Paper's changes might work in practice. Just as importantly, we will unpick how they might apply in big cities, in little villages and in the open countryside. No dates are available yet, but we’re expecting to be busy in September and October.

An obvious and immediate question is how quickly this will all be introduced and what to do with existing plans at various stages of production. Speaking personally, I was too busy dancing to acid house music while the 1990 Town & Country Planning Act was being introduced to notice how long it all took, but I suspect it was years. We will explore the transition question in more detail I’m sure, but our starting point is going to be 'get your Local Plan to the finish line'.

Anna is on holiday at the moment, enjoying a very welcome change of scene, and I hope that you get an opportunity to change gear and recharge your batteries. We are in for a long ride.


Richard Crawley
PAS Programme Manager

Leadership Essentials planning training: 5 and 6 November 2020

We are delivering a LGA Leadership Essentials councillor training session in Warwick on 5 and 6 November 2020 that will look at the proposed and implemented changes as part of a planning update for lead councillors. The two-day residential course will be delivered in person (socially distanced of course) to delegates who wish to attend and we'll be offering online access for those who don’t. Both sets of delegates will have the same work, access to the same speakers and undertake the discussions. 

To find out more or to book a place, please contact grace.collins@local.gov.uk.

Design in the public sector: climate change - deadline for applications

The LGA/Design Council Design in the Public Sector programme is now open for applications. This year, it'll be equipping councils with design skills, methods and new ways of working to apply to their toughest local climate challenges. 

PAS is encouraging planning teams to enter. Last week's planning White Paper signalled a 'new focus on design and sustainability' and an ambition 'to strengthen the way that environmental issues are considered through the planning system'.

What could this mean for planning now and in future? Here is an opportunity to get support, using design principles, to develop your ideas and achieve impact; be it cross-departmental projects, innovative approaches to engagement, policy formulation, or working with developers on specific sites, it’s up to you.

Find out more about the Design in the public sector programme.

If you'd like any help with your bid, please email martin.hutchings@local.gov.uk

Deadline for applications is 4 September 2020.

Climate change resources survey: can you help? 

UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) is updating its new build Policy Playbook and creating a new Retrofit Playbook. Both resources will provide significant practical guidance to local planning authorities (LPAs) by mapping and signposting examples of existing and developing policies.

PAS has agreed to help by asking LPAs to take five minutes to complete this short UKGBC survey so that it can include policies and programmes from your authority and share them.

Thanks in advance for giving your time.

From the blog

Richard reflects on the first meeting of a group helping us get our thoughts in order on digital local plans. How do we begin to eat the local plan digital elephant?


First impressions on the changes to the use class order

Representations and anonymity