PPS Planning | News


Here you will find the latest news in planning and general advice.

By pps-planning, Nov 30 2016 04:00PM

Have your say now before its too late....

There are widespread concerns over the proposed allocation of large areas of countryside for future development.around Royton, Shaw, Rochdale and Middleton.

Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) has (in conjunction with Local Authorities) produced a Draft Greater Manchester Strategic Framework (GMSF) for consultation. The GMSF allocates many sites across the whole of the Greater Manchester Region with the aim of ensuring there is sufficient land for new housing and employment uses to meet future needs of the existing and growing population up to 2035.

It is clear that those needs cannot be met on sites within the urban area and that some green belt sites must be identified for future development. The Draft Framework identifies a focus for employment and housing growth within a ‘Northern Gateway’ focussed on the M62 around Oldham and Rochdale. Whilst the need for some growth is supported, here the extent of proposed green belt release has shocked local residents. Some sites in Rochdale (e.g. Kingsway Business Park) and land south of Heywood will be no surprise, but the extent of the proposals to take land out of the green belt (which currently separates Rochdale, Middleton and Royton) for development is of a scale that has horrified local residents. The area straddles the A627M, extends to A671 in Royton and includes green belt between M62 and Thornham Lane.

PPS Planning Manchester considers that the proposals are too extensive and will harm the strategic role of the green belt in this area, and the setting of Tandle Hill Country Park. We will be preparing a planning case to oppose the allocation in order to assist local residents with their objections.

To view PPS Manchester’s representations, e-mail info@pps-planning.co.uk for a free electronic copy. You can use this document to help you write your own representations.

Submitting your representation

To have your say, go to the GMFS Consultation portal which explains how you can comment on line, by email or by post.

You must submit your representations BEFORE THE 23RD DECEMBER 2016, when the consultation period ends.

The allocation includes large areas of high quality green belt land
The allocation includes large areas of high quality green belt land

By pps-planning, Jul 7 2016 07:02PM

 Cowm Park Way, Rochdale
Cowm Park Way, Rochdale

Housing Approvals

Woodlea Chase, Rochdale. This Cambrian Homes development of 11 detached dwellings (designed by Grosvenor Architectural Design Ltd) is now well under construction. (PPS Planning was appointed to appraise this greenfield site, prepare a Planning Statement, Design and Access Statement.

Cowm Park Way South, Whitworth. Outline planning permission has been obtained for the erection of 3 detached dwellings. The site is now on the market for sale. (PPS Planning was appointed to appraise the site and to obtain outline permission.)

Littleborough Neighbourhood Plan.

Following a major consultation exercise, the Littleborough Neighbourhood Plan is moving forward to policy preparation stage. A Heritage and Character Assessment has been prepared by AECOM and Manchester University post graduate students (SEED) are assessing options and ideas taking account of the community’s views and recent survey work. PPS Planning has been appointed to help the Forum prepare the Plan policies and consullt with the public and relevant organisations.

Rooley Moor Neighbourhood Plan

The Rooley Moor Neighbourhood Forum is preparing for a launch event to start the preparation of the plan and to consult with the local community. The Neighbourhood Plan is intended to promote heritage and landscape conservation, promote high standards of planning and architecture and promote sustainable recreation and tourism. (PPS Planning has now been appointed to advise and assist the Forum prepare the Plan for this rural part of north Rochdale.) The Rooley Moor Neighbourhood Forum launch event will take place in Catley Lane Head between 11am and 5pm on Sunday 14th August 2016.

By pps-planning, Apr 21 2016 07:23PM

The Government has published new technical guidance on the Government website. Click here

'Permitted development ' rights allow householders to improve and extend their homes without the need to apply for planning permission where that would be out of proportion with the impact of works carried out.

This technical guidance has been produced to help homeowners understand how they can exercise their rights to carry out development while protecting the interests of their neighbours and the wider environment. It is designed to be used by anyone who wants to understand more about the detailed rules on householder permitted development and the terms used in those rules.

PPS Planning welcomes the new guidance but is concerned that the guidance is not an easy read and is not well presented. The Government's Planning Portal is easier to understand and the service is free. However, homeowners should be aware that in some areas, rights may be restricted (for example if your property is listed or if your rights have been removed by your Council or by the original planning permission). If you are in any doubt, seek professional advice before you start. PPS Planning can help.

Homeowners should also be aware that when you sell your property you may need proof that your extension is lawful. PPS Planning can help you with an application for a Lawful Development Certificate.

By pps-planning, May 6 2015 10:09AM

Before you vote, read this..... The main political parties have a lot to say about how the planning system and planning policies should promote housing growth, plan for jobs, protect the environment, improve transport infrastructure , and deal with green belt etc.. Here’s my summary of the parties’ manifestos .......


The Conservative Party’s election manifest to pledges:

• A £1 billion brownfield regeneration fund promote the construction of new homes

• To change the law so that local people have the final say on wind farm applications

• To ensure local people have more control over planning

• To protect the green belt

• To support locally-led garden cities and towns in places where communities want them

• To use brownfield land "as much as possible" (Local authorities will be required to have "a register of what is available" and ensure that "90 per cent of brownfield sites have planning permission for housing by 2020").


The Labour Party’s election manifesto pledges:

• To ensure at least 200,000 homes a year get built by 2020

• A commitment to build a "new generation" of garden cities

• To give local authorities the power to "give first call to first time buyers of new homes in areas of housing growth"

• New powers for councils to require particular types of shops to apply for planning permission, e.g., payday lenders or other shops that are clustering on a single high street

• New "use it or lose it" powers to encourage developers to build.

Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrat election manifesto pledges:

• To "bring to an end the permitted development rights for converting offices to residential"

• To "strengthen" the duty to cooperate when preparing plans.

• To require local authorities to make a plan for 15 years of housing need, working collaboratively with neighbouring councils where necessary to identify sites"

• To create ten new garden cities "in areas where there is local support and homes are needed most, as part of our ambitious plans "

• To build 300,000 homes a year

• To create a community right of appeal in cases where planning decisions go against the approved local plan.


UKIP’s election manifesto pledges:

• To replace the National Planning Policy Framework and "introduce fresh national planning guidelines that will prioritise brownfield sites for new housing and genuinely protect the green belt".

• To free local authorities from "government-imposed minimum housing numbers".

• To allow large-scale developments to be overturned by a binding local referendum triggered by the signatures of five per cent of electors within a planning authority area, collected within three months.

Green Party

The Green Party’s manifesto pledges:

• To scrap the NPPF "and in particular its presumption in favour of sustainable development", and "put planning back in hands of local people and government

• To require local authorities to map local ecological networks and work collaboratively to develop national spatial plans".

• To restrict the right of applicants to appeal only where there has been an error in the planning process

• To introduce a community right of appeal where a development is non-compliant with a neighbourhood plan or local plan.

My thoughts??

Well, some good ideas from all but also some unnecessary changes to the planning system and unnecessary controls over planning authorities in my view.

The PPS Planning manifesto would pledge:

• Not to meddle further with planning legislation to ensure some stability and certainty for developers and investors;

• To insist that local plans are prepared more quickly, that local planning authorities collaborate more, and that they plan across local government boundaries more;

• To invest in local authority planning departments (rather than cut resources) so that local plans can be prepared more quickly and to ensure faster decisions can be made on planning applications;

• To make information about planning policies, land ownership and investment plans more easily available and understandable to everyone;

• To make sure that transport infrastructure investment and environmental improvements are focussed where the housing and employment growth is planned; and

• To introduce policies to give first time buyers and local people priority over new homes and to give communities more control over what types of houses are built.

What the political parties say about Planning
What the political parties say about Planning

By pps-planning, Jan 16 2015 10:15AM

UK Planning in 2015 - What can we expect? Many involved in the planning process will all have their own ideas of what to expect in the UK planning world during 2015 – no doubt a mixture of hope and despair. But... for the record.... these are some of my thoughts......

1. The cuts in public spending (likely to continue, whichever government is elected, for another 5 years) means there will be fewer planners and other specialists administering the planning system. This is bad news for developers, investors and those who want the system to be more sustainable because they rely on the public sector for support and speedy and effective decision making. If the economy does continue to grow and the number of planning applications rises, local planning authorities will need to introduce innovative solutions.

2. Government attempts at simplifying planning and reducing costs by removing planning red tape may continue further but the recently introduced permitted development rights will continue to baffle many, and will require the interpretation of planning lawyers and the advice of private planning consultants.

3. Developers will be expected more and more to fund the physical and community infrastructure necessary to support their developments. The need to deliver new homes across the country in a difficult economic climate will need a practical and varied approach to implementing the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL). More coherent guidance and best practice on CIL is needed otherwise development could be either be discouraged because of infrastructure costs, or compromised by a lack of infrastructure.

4. In support of the ‘localism’ agenda, many more Neighbourhood Forums and Plans will be established in 2015 but despite the announcement of a new programme worth £22.5 million, I predict Forums will struggle to obtain the resources and practical support required to complete their plans or at least within their planned timescales.

5. Town Centres will continue to suffer from the retail revolution and online shopping. Some brave new ideas on the role of centres and how they should be regenerated, funded and managed are needed. Otherwise, centres will further decline and tarnish the image of the towns around them.

6. We should expect more arguments about the future of green belts and green belt policy. Whilst the government is committed to keeping green belts, many question their sanctity, saying: green belts force urban dwellers to move further out to find suitable housing opportunities, the poor quality of land in green belt provides little benefits for nearby populations, and green belts prevent much needed housing and economic development in areas of demand (especially around Greater Manchester and London). However, green belt has an important role to play and many are fiercely protective of it. Therefore Local Plans looking to change green belt boundaries will become very political and many people will be uncomfortable that decisions will be led by ‘Mayors’ and new Super Councils (e.g. Greater Manchester).

7. We should also expect more debate about the future of UK ‘strategic planning’. Good planning needs to address economic planning, energy planning, flood management, transport and infrastructure planning and this means planning across local government boundaries. Collaborative working within the combined authorities such as Greater Manchester, under the new ‘City Deal’, and the focus of economic investment through Local Enterprise Partnerships, may not be enough and more ‘regional’ planning may be needed to guide spending on the big infrastructure projects (and to resolve tensions between competing city regions).

8. Finally, I predict PPS Planning will be busier than last year.

Have a Happy 2015 !

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