The Advice for Inspectors on the #NPPF


Mainly deals with transitional casework issues for cases in the system.

Annex D is interesting as it lists the main NPPF policy changes.

The impact assessment has not been published.  I can only guess it has not been finished as arguments with the Treasury on content went down to the wire.

Changes listed in National Planning Policy Framework Impact assessment

  •  Introduction of presumption in favour of sustainable development.
  •  Removal of small scale rural office development from ‘town centre first’ policy.
  • For major town centre schemes where full impact will not be realised within 5 years, impacts should also be assessed for a period of up to 10 years.
  •  Removal of the maximum non-residential car parking standards for major developments
  • Removal of national brownfield target for housing development.
  • Require local planning authorities to allocate and update annually a 5 year supply of housing sites with at least 5% buffer (moved forward from later in plan period) and 20% buffer (moved forward from later in plan period) where a record of persistent under delivery.
  • Removal of national minimum site size threshold for requiring affordable housing to be delivered.
  • Increased flexibility for delivery of rural housing to reflect local needs.
  • Increased protection for community facilities.
  • Minor technical changes to the detail of Green Belt policy.
  • Provide more flexibility regarding manner in which local planning authorities meet local requirements for decentralised energy supply.
  •  Encouragement for local planning authorities to map areas for commercial scale renewable and low carbon energy development opportunity, and then to apply these criteria to other applications.
  • Requirement on local planning authorities to take strategic approach in Local Plans to creation, protection, enhancement and management of networks of biodiversity and green infrastructure.
  • Recognition of designation within Local Plans of locally designated sites of importance for wildlife, geodiversity or landscape character.
  • Clarification of which wildlife sites should have same protection as European sites.
  • Removal of requirement to set criteria and select sites for peat extraction.

Note the difference from the draft impact statement.  This referred to removal of national target – and priority – critical.  Of course the draft made lots of assumptions on loss of Green Field land which were widely ridiculed.  I doubt the final version will make that mistake.

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