• Hike in successful appeals could be linked to NPPF

    14th December 2011 | News | Claire
  • The Planning Inspectorate decided appeals for more than 6,900 homes between July to September this year and allowed 55 per cent of them, representing a 16 per cent rise in approvals for residential schemes.  The rate was just 39 per cent from April to June.

    The success rate of appeals across all sectors decided by hearing also shot up from 38 per cent in the first quarter of this year, to 47 per cent during the last three months.

    The hike is being seen as evidence that the government’s pro-growth stance and the draft National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) is already having an effect.

    Planning experts are saying that the results highlighted tensions with Localism: Jonathan Brown of Urbed Trust (Urban and Economic Development) said: ‘This statistical snapshot raises questions as to whether the draft NPPF, and the chief planner’s note to inspectors, have encouraged frustrated applicants to appeal, with an enhanced chance of success.

    ‘This is precisely the intent of the NPPF, and, if confirmed, can be seen as an interim policy victory for the Treasury’s “growth view”, well before the final framework is published in spring.’

    Others believe the rise could be due to housebuilders trying to push residential developments through before the Localism Act kicks in.

    Geoff Armstrong, partner of planning solicitors DPP said: ‘The rise is planning by appeal is an inevitable consequence of the uncertainty linked to the NPPF and Localism Bill, which give no guarantee of planning through committee.’

    However, ACA spokesman and planning consultant Andrews Rogers had a more pragmatic view: ‘The rise in appeals relating to dwellings simply follows the trend for more appeals due to the collapsing system.’