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Planning and environment

Change of use – GPDO changes

The General Permitted Development Order has now been relaxed to allow more widespread changes of use without the need for planning permission.

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Judicial review – six-week period

The government sees JR applications as a ‘cheap delaying tactic’ in planning appeals.

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Breaches – concealed

Localism Act 2011 introduced provisions on concealed planning breaches. This was largely as a result of highly publicised cases (eg the house built behind a shield of straw bales). As a result, s124 allows LAs to apply to be able to take planning enforcement action outside the normal four- and ten-year time limits if there has been a planning breach as a result of ‘concealment’. An application must be made within six months of the date of knowledge of evidence of the apparent breach.

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CON 29R – search fees

LAs can only charge disbursements when providing environmental information for CON 29R personal searches (ie they cannot charge for staff time involved).

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Listed building – permitted development

Hands up if you think that, in England, the enlargement, improvement or other alteration of a dwelling house which would consist of or include the erection of a building within the curtilage of a listed building is not permitted development?

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Planning obligation – ResPark?

A planning obligation is a binding agreement entered into by the LA and the landowner. It is binding on the landowner and also the successors in title. It can result from either a bilateral agreement between the LA and the landowner, or alternatively by a unilateral undertaking made by the landowner. 

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Planning – outline permission

The amount of detail required for an outline planning permission was reduced in January 2013.

The idea behind outline planning permissions is that they enable developers of larger sites to obtain planning permission for the principles of development, leaving the design of details to a later stage.

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Section 106 agreement – five-year rule

Traditionally, a planning agreement (under s106) has to have been in place for five years before it is possible to apply to change it (with a right of appeal to the secretary of state). Now, however, from 28 March 2013, it will be possible to apply in respect of any s106 agreement entered into before 6 March 2010 (even though such an agreement may be less than three years old). For obligations entered into after 6 April 2010, a five-year period still applies.

 

Offices – residential use

Permitted development allows a change of use from one category of use to another, without the need to apply for planning permission. Importantly, a change of use from offices to residential will now become permitted development for a three-year period. 

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Change of use – holiday let

Planning permission is needed for any ‘development’, and this will include ‘the making of any material change in the use of any buildings or other land’ (s55(1) TCPA 1990). 

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