The best things in life are free(ports)?

It’s the early 1980s, a Conservative government is in power and struggling through a period of economic volatility following the “winter of discontent” during which widespread public and private sector strikes gripped the nation. Soaring inflation, rising oil costs and outspoken demands for increased wages are contributing to a sense of national crisis. Sound familiar? … Read more

A Christmas miracle: consultation on proposed reforms to national planning policy

‘Twas the night before Christmas (well, almost, it was 22 December) and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities delivered on Michael Gove’s promise to publish revisions to national planning policy for consultation. The consultation came in the form of a consultation on proposed reforms to national planning policy and indicative mark-up of the National … Read more

Real Estate Development Yule Blog – 4 failed deadlines

Section 1 of the landmark Environment Act (EA) 2021 requires the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to set long-term environmental targets in respect of four priority areas: air quality; water; biodiversity; and resource efficiency and waste reduction. The date by which these targets should have been set was 31 October 2022. … Read more

Real Estate Development Yule Blog – 10 percent more

On this 10th day of our Yule Blog, we revisit the 10% mandatory biodiversity net gain regime under the Environment Act (EA) 2021. What can we expect over the coming months as the government brings the requirement into force next year? Recap – what is mandatory biodiversity net gain? Part 6 of the EA 2021 … Read more

Conservation covenants – now registrable

Conservation covenants were introduced by the Environment Act 2021. They are private, voluntary legal agreements which bind current and future landowners to positive and restrictive conservation related actions. They have been available for use since 30 September 2022, but rules enabling a conservation covenant to be registered as a local land charge came into effect … Read more

Autumn Statement 2022 – implications for planning and development

Yesterday’s Autumn Statement was keenly awaited by many. Among the news that developers hoped to learn was what we can expect for planning reform, on which see our post here. Have we got the clarity that we were hoping for? To some extent perhaps. From a planning point of view the Autumn Statement may have … Read more

The Growth Plan: Political upheaval and planning

EG reported this afternoon that the government’s Investment Zone policy “is rumoured to be scrapped” in Monday’s Autumn Statement – we will know more in a few days’ time. The uncertainty surrounding this is now unfortunately familiar when it comes to changes to the planning system. Investment Zones were a significant part of the previous … Read more

Growth Plan 2022 – Investment Zones, planning reform and housing targets

It’s been a busy couple of weeks for the future of planning. On 23 September, the Chancellor announced the government’s Growth Plan 2022, and last week has seen Conservative Party Conference speeches from the new Levelling Up Minister, Simon Clarke, and the Prime Minister putting (limited) flesh on the bones on the future of levelling … Read more

New PM – nutrient neutrality and other planning promises

Today we have a new Prime Minister, bringing new policies. Much was said during the Conservative Party leadership election about what the new PM will change – a range of promises to the party faithful on the cost of living crisis, energy, housing and the environment to name but a few. The wording was careful, … Read more