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National Infrastructure Anomalies

Planning how to spend 179 billion pounds is a challenge few of us ever have to face apart, of course, from those who happen to be manager of Real Madrid. Football may be dominating national discourse just at the moment, but Tuesday saw more than just the 100th birthday of the RAF and a World Cup sem...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 11 July 2018

Chemical Warfare

As you may have heard, this last week has been National Insect Week and the alarms are ringing ever more loudly warning that UK insects are in big trouble. And, as thoughtful people, you will also know that means big trouble for us humans. We can pretty well all provide anecdotal evidence about this...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 29 June 2018

Yours Cynically

Lifting the stone of official secrecy to see what is scuttling about underneath is always a rewarding process and the emails published by the Manchester Evening News are a case in point. They reveal an email trail between civil servants which show the Government knew three years ago it would be clos...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 23 June 2018

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Resourcing challenge for brownfield registers

Added on 12 December 2017

Preparation of local authority brownfield registers will need substantially wider resources as current levels risk missing many sites, especially smaller ones.

The finding is part of a report by the Campaign to Protect Rural England on unlocking the registers’ potential. It covers research by HTA Design into implementation of the Brownfield Land Register Regulations 2017 under which English planning authorities must complete registers by the end of the year.

Case studies suggest councils are simply adding the activity on to strategic housing land availability assessments rather than using it as a tool to drive identification of brownfield sites. The task has fallen on overworked planning staff and innovative practices and engagement with community groups has been limited.

“The findings of this research also highlight there is uncertainty around the purpose of the brownfield land register – whether it is to provide accurate data on the amount of brownfield land available for redevelopment, or whether it is a planning mechanism which can be used to provide certainty to developers that brownfield sites are suitable for housing led-development,” says the report.

There are also concerns that the permission-in-principle route to planning consent which the Part 2 registers provide will undermine departmental revenues. The report recommends an early review of the register process.

Report

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