PAS Bulletin: April 2021

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April 2021

PAS Bulletin: April 2021

Heading into the first of the May bank holiday weekends, PAS has been busily putting the finishing touches to a new work programme. In addition to our support for local plans, development management, delivery and infrastructure we are now working on local planning authority resources, town centres, urban regeneration, freeports and nitrates and phosphates.

We are also planning a 2022 event for heads of planning and rising stars, and launching a councillor training programme. We will continue to offer peer reviews and direct support services, but to do this we really need to increase and diversify our available peer lists. Could you become a planning peer to help facilitate sector led improvement? As ever, if you need help or wish to get involved in our work and you have a e-mail address then please get in touch at

Anna Rose

Head of PAS

Introducing new PAS team members

We are really pleased to introduce to you Rebecca and Peter who are our newest members of the PAS team:

Rebecca Moberly: I've joined PAS after a career with Natural England, most recently on secondment to the Environment Agency. My background is in planning for the environment, biodiversity and natural capital, leading innovative and collaborative projects. I'm working on our Defra project on biodiversity net gain and the Environment Bill. 

Peter Ford: I have spent most of my Planning career at Plymouth City Council and for the last 12 years have been their Head of Development Management.  I have worked in policy, urban regeneration, delivery and design. I have also been a PAS Peer Officer supporting sector led improvement. My main areas of work at PAS are Development Management and Design Codes.

Councillor training: dates for your diary

PAS is delivering some free councillor training on planning policy, decision making and infrastructure. The sessions will be delivered remotely. If you are a councillor who is new to planning, or you want a refresher, please book a place.

Code School training offer from Urban Design Learning

Urban Design Learning (UDL) is delivering a Code School tailored to local authorities, starting in early May. The modules have been designed to help you grasp the design code fundamentals: planning and strategy, creating local identity, using digital tools and delivering code success. Find out more about Code School and book your place.

If you want to catch up on the MHCLG launch of the National Model Design Code the RTPI has uploaded a recording from February 2021 featuring Chief Planner Joanna Averley and Head of Architecture Andy von Bradsky.  

Help us design our Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) project

Register for our workshops on 25 and 27 May for an overview of what's happening with the Environment Bill and BNG and tell us what you want and need from our project. Ecologists have good support networks, so our focus is everybody else who needs to understand BNG enough to do their jobs in Policy and Development Management. 

Delivery during a pandemic

Record levels of applications, never been busier policy teams but what’s really going on with delivery and construction during the pandemic? We are holding an event on 26 May to hear the reality of delivery on the ground and to explore what LPAs can do in response. Book your place.

Neighbourhood Planning – New funding opportunities

New Neighbourhood Planning Funding was launched this week and we are holding an event  on 10 May about the £2.1 million fund and the simpler approach to neighbourhood planning pilot scheme. The event is open to all councils but is particularly aimed at those who are eligible for the fund or who are interested in becoming a pilot authority. Book your place.

Brownfield Land Release Fund (BLRF)

The One Public Estate (OPE) Programme has launched the BLRF. This fund comprises up to £75 million of capital grant, available to eligible English local authorities to support local authority brownfield land release for housing, with £25 million ring-fenced to support self and custom-build delivery. OPE partnerships are invited to coordinate applications to the fund from local authorities across their OPE partnership areas. Applications are due by 2 June 2021. For further details about the fund and how to apply, visit OPE’s website.

Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) digital services

Natural England is developing new digital services to support mandatory BNG, including a Site Register and biodiversity Credit Sales Service. It wants LPA officers to participate in user research and testing from July to November 2021. Find out more and register interest before Friday 14 May.

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