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Planning For The Future

Opencast quarry site minerals

Matthews & Son are currently considering the Governments consultation on reforms to the planning system.

The Government published the ‘Planning for the Future’ consultation document on Thursday 6 August 2020; a 63-page text only version or 43 pages for the ‘with pictures’ widescreen experience.

Geographical scope:      England

Consultation Deadline:  29 October 2020


Aim: ‘…to streamline and modernise the planning process, improve outcomes on design and sustainability, reform developer contributions and ensure more land is available for development where it is needed.’

Mineral extraction trade organisations will be waving the flag to preserve our industry’s future interests and we would urge you to get involved.  Key points as far as we’re concerned, without more detailed consideration, are ‘mineral safeguarding’ and mineral infrastructure safeguarding.’

The document contains three ‘Pillars’:

  1. Planning for development
  2. Planning for beautiful and sustainable places
  3. Planning for infrastructure and connected places

Here we look at the first; others to follow soon.

Pillar One – Planning for Development

Local Plans

The principle of LPAs adopting Local Plans being prepared in line with the NPPF remains.  In order to overcome excessive complexity Local Plans, it is proposed, should be focussed on areas for:

GROWTH – where adoption of a Local Plan confers outline planning permission within defined parameters,

RENEWAL – where there would be a presumption in favour of certain types defined development, and

PROTECTION – where development would be more stringently controlled based on environmental &/or cultural characteristics, e.g. Green Belt, AONB, etc.

Decision Making

Planning permission for new development would still be required.  In respect of each of the three areas above:

GROWTH – a reserved matters application, a Local Development Order or a Development Consent Order (as appropriate).

RENEWAL – a permission in principle, a full planning application or a Local / Neighbourhood Development Order.

PROTECTION – a full planning application.

Schemes in GROWTH and RENEWAL areas that differ from the Local Plan can be the subject of a specific planning applications.

Of note…

There are no specific references to minerals in the consultation document and the word ‘resources’ is used only in the context of human capital in planning departments.

It is proposed to abolish the Sustainability Appraisal system and the Duty to Cooperate, although further consideration would be given to strategic cross-boundary issues, such as major infrastructure and strategic sites.

For further information and advice in respect of proposed planning reforms please speak to either Simon Chaffe or Sian Holmes


Simon Chaffe

07825 700762

Sian Holmes

07468 612454