PAS Bulletin: 16 December 2021

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16 December 2021

PAS Bulletin

The end of year bulletin is usually quite a jolly affair for us. In previous years we have hung a little Santa hat on the PAS logo and joked about office parties. This year is closing again in a sombre way we'd hoped was behind us. So we have cancelled our January conference and will have to wait probably until June before seeing you all in person. On the bright side this delay will mean that some important members of the PAS team who we have been missing for a while can be there too.

Some of the changes to procedures introduced in the original lockdown are expiring soon. We have taken the opportunity to update our once-busy coronavirus pages and there are some small details to check around making documents available in hardcopy.

However it's not all gloom and doom. Some of the things we were intending to do at conference will now run as stand-alone virtual events. First up are a series of events drawing on what we've learned from our work on local plans, with a particular focus on timeless skills that are unlikely to change substantially in any planning reform.

Lastly, in a few days I'm very excited that the PAS team is recruiting again. If you know someone who might be interested in a secondment with us working on water quality, nutrient neutrality and setting up offset schemes, point them towards We have already had some brilliant people register their interest so I'm hoping to build a strong little multi-disciplinary team to work on this tricky and topical area.

Stay safe and we hope to see you soon.

Richard Crawley
PAS Programme Manager

(Until) A change is gonna come – Can we future proof our plan making activity?

Amongst planning reform speculation Government’s most consistent message has been “getting plans in place for 2023”. We’re going to be sharing our learning from councils currently preparing and reviewing their local plans. We’re focusing on the requirements that are unlikely to change in any new system. This includes project management, evidence bases and cooperating on strategic matters. Come along to one of our sessions on 27 January 2022.

Future proofing the plan-making process - AM session

Future proofing the plan-making process - PM session

PAS COVID-19 guidance - FAQs and legislation that is about to expire

Our COVID-19 FAQs helped LPAs by providing advice on how to do ‘planning in a pandemic’. We are all now operating in a (new) normality with mature processes, procedures and communications. We have therefore archived our COVID-19 FAQs but also left some thoughts on the emergency legislation affecting Planning that is due to expire on 31 December 2021. 

Natural England's Green Infrastructure Framework

Natural England have just launched a Green Infrastructure (GI) mapping tool and GI Principles as part of their GI Framework project, which will be fully available in Autumn 2022. Further information is available on Natural England's blog.

Environment, place-making and planning events

Ecosystems Knowledge Network are running free webinars on 13 and 20 January 2022, 1-2 pm, on place-making and a strategic view of nature, providing insight into local initiatives that have been working to create a common understanding of place through natural capital evidence.

Their CPD-level online Environment for Planning training course on 25 and 27 January 2022 is designed for anyone working in the planning and built development sectors. It equips participants to embed a natural capital approach in planning and development. Discount of 10% for LGA members (use coupon code LGA10).

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