PAS Bulletin: December 2020 - Christmas edition

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17 December 2020

PAS Bulletin: December 2020 - Christmas edition

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...but in a very 2020 sort of way!

If you're anything like the PAS team, you will have been frantically busy right up until Christmas. Whilst there will always be a PAS person available, we will all be taking some time out over Christmas and New Year. I hope that everyone is able to take a well earned break from planning. There is plenty to do in 2021 but that can wait whilst we all recharge our batteries.

Whatever you are planning to do, stay safe.

The PAS team wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy and healthy new year.

Anna Rose
Head of PAS

PAS recruiting

We are very excited to be recruiting for two new members of the PAS team. One for our biodiversity net gain work with DEFRA and another for our wider programme with MHCLG. Both roles are fixed term due to the short-term nature of our funding but we have been around since 2005 and it doesn't look like planning reform is going to be finished anytime soon. You can see the details of the roles on the recruitment site "jobtrain". The closing date is 6 January 2020. If you love planning, local government and making a difference give us a whirl. 

Get your Local Plan to the line: 2023!

With planning reform and the announcement of the new housing numbers lots of local planning authorities (LPAs) are carefully weighing up how best to get their local plan ‘to the line’ to meet the Government’s 2023 deadline. PAS has created a Gateway Review to give LPAs a free, independent assessment of the risks and opportunities they currently face to getting their plan in place by 2023 and give a clear path forward.  If you’d like to find out more drop us an email 

Community engagement: good practice and case studies

Technology is changing how we reach out to and engage with our communities. It is also changing the way in which communities are taking part in the planning system - particularly since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. No one is yet an expert in 'consultation during a pandemic'. But it is a good time to look at the opportunities new technology presents and how it can broaden your consultation reach. Hana Loftus, at the Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service, has helped us to do this and produced some good practice advice and example case studies.

PAS new offer - FREE Virtual Planning Committee Review

LPAs across the country have responded amazingly to be delivering virtual planning committees in response to COVID-19 restrictions. We are keen to help LPAs to review, share good practice and learning on how the committees are being delivered as part of a free health check. If you would be interested in having a health check in the new year please get in touch at


The Earned Recognition Project has launched a consultation for planners and other development stakeholders to gather views on its proposed new scheme to streamline, raise and maintain professional standards around the mitigation licensing process for bats in England. The scheme will be piloted in 2021, with the consultation open until midday 5 January 2021 and the project would welcome your comments.


More on monitoring self-build plots: Monitoring self build plots? - Public forum - Planning Advisory Service (PAS) - Knowledge Hub (

Design quality on smaller (1-10 dwellings) applications: 'Minor' housing development applications - Public forum - Planning Advisory Service (PAS) - Knowledge Hub (

Managing a database of local plan consultation responses: storing consultation responses v data protection - Public forum - Planning Advisory Service (PAS) - Knowledge Hub (