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Planning Authorities (Development Policy)

Volume 204: debated on Friday 28 February 1992

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will make it his policy to encourage local planning authorities to make known a clear presumption against development in areas unsuitable for development, in order to deter repeated applications.

Guidance on the preparation of development plans in PPG12, published on 10 February 1992, emphasises that such plans provide the framework for sound and effective development control. While they must make adequate provision for development, full account must also be taken of the need to protect the built and natural environments. Planning applications must be determined in accordance with the development plan unless material considerations indicate otherwise. An applicant who proposes development which is clearly in conflict with the development plan would need to produce convincing reasons to demonstrate why the plan should not prevail.Development plans will therefore give much greater certainty about what development will and will not be acceptable in particular locations. Coupled with local planning authorities' power, under section 17 of the Planning and Compensation Act 1991, to turn away certain categories of repetitive planning applications, the new development plan system should reduce considerably the incidence of repeated applications.