MHCLG renamed Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities

MHCLG renamed Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) is to be renamed the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), it has been confirmed, though the inclusion of 'levelling up' in the departmental name has prompted some concerns in the planning sector.

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PD and use class changes risk undermining regeneration efforts, ‘levelling up’ report warns

PD and use class changes risk undermining regeneration efforts, ‘levelling up’ report warns

The government’s recent relaxation of use class order and permitted development (PD) rules for commercial properties should be “kept under review" and easier exemptions from the eased planning rules allowed for town centres if evidence emerges that they are "undermining regeneration efforts”, a report on boosting economic development in "left behind places" has recommended.

Lords vote for limits to habitats assessment rule changes and greater ancient woodland  planning protection in new Environment Bill amendments

Lords vote for limits to habitats assessment rule changes and greater ancient woodland planning protection in new Environment Bill amendments

Members of the House of Lords have voted in favour of two new amendments to the Environment Bill, which would introduce restrictions on ministerial powers to amend the Habitats Regulations rules and greater planning protection for ancient woodland.

PINS Wales responsibilities to transfer to Welsh Government

PINS Wales responsibilities to transfer to Welsh Government

The staff and functions of Planning Inspectorate (PINS) Wales will transfer to a new service run by the Welsh Government from October.

Dorries 'approves iconic Dorman Long Tower for demolition'

Dorries 'approves iconic Dorman Long Tower for demolition'

News that the new culture secretary Nadine Dorries has “clashed” with Historic England over her decision not to give the Dorman Long Tower in North Yorkshire listed status, paving the way for its imminent demolition, leads our roundup of today’s news.


Latest Articles

Gove 'pauses and promises to review government planning changes'

Gove 'pauses and promises to review government planning changes'

New housing secretary Michael Gove has "paused" the government’s long-awaited shake-up of the planning system and pledged to conduct a review into how the proposals can be improved, according to newspaper reports, which say he intends to consult with Tory backbenchers.

Former Policy Exchange director lands MHCLG ministerial post

Former Policy Exchange director lands MHCLG ministerial post

Neil O’Brien MP, a former director of the Policy Exchange think tank who describes "reforming" the planning system as one of his priorities and was a prominent critic of later-dropped plans to revise the way local housing need is calculated, has been appointed to a new junior ministerial post at the housing ministry.

'Planning system fails to integrate government climate change commitments,' says Lord Deben

'Planning system fails to integrate government climate change commitments,' says Lord Deben

Climate Change Committee (CCC) chair Lord Deben has told MPs that the planning system fails to integrate the government’s commitments to fighting climate change, while local authorities lack Whitehall support in their efforts to reach net zero.

The implications for planners of a new government-commissioned report on self build housing

The implications for planners of a new government-commissioned report on self build housing

A government-commissioned report's recommendations on changing the planning system to boost self build housing - including the introduction of local authority plot targets - are likely to be positively received by ministers, say observers. But some are concerned about the implications for councils of having to hit any new quotas and of additional duties.

Why the risk of councils issuing planning decisions by mistake may be increasing

Why the risk of councils issuing planning decisions by mistake may be increasing

Recent examples of planning decision blunders by councils should serve as a warning over moves to digitise the planning system, say practitioners, who highlight the difficulty and cost of overturning such administrative errors. Many also believe that the risk of mistakes has become greater due to local authority planning teams becoming increasingly over-stretched.

The most frequent, and successful, housing appellants

The most frequent, and successful, housing appellants

Our exclusive research reveals the firms that saw the most appeals against refusals of schemes for five homes or more determined in 2018-21. PLUS The most successful appellants, and the authorities with the best and worst records at appeal.

The councils with the worst records for defending housing appeals

The councils with the worst records for defending housing appeals

Our list of the least successful local authorities at defending appeals against the refusal of schemes of five homes or more between 2018 and 2021.

The councils with the best records for defending housing appeals

The councils with the best records for defending housing appeals

Our list of the most successful local authorities at defending appeals against refusals of schemes for five homes or more between 2018 and 2021.

What Michael Gove’s appointment as housing secretary could mean for planning

What Michael Gove’s appointment as housing secretary could mean for planning

The new housing secretary is a Whitehall heavyweight and a former shadow minister for housing who has previously expressed support for more greenfield development, is "passionate" about the beauty agenda and is “good at making change happen”, according to commentators.

Read the autumn quarterly edition of Planning page-by-page online

Read the autumn quarterly edition of Planning page-by-page online

Our fifth print quarterly edition covers the hardest developers to refuse, fresh opportunities to build discounted homes on unallocated sites and how the new National Planning Policy Framework changes the system

Pincher still housing minister; new MHCLG minister appointed

Pincher still housing minister; new MHCLG minister appointed

Christopher Pincher remains in the housing and planning minister role, while a new minister has been appointed to the housing ministry.

Reaction: Gove becomes housing secretary in cabinet reshuffle

Reaction: Gove becomes housing secretary in cabinet reshuffle

Michael Gove has been appointed as housing and communities secretary by Number 10 to replace Robert Jenrick in the cabinet reshuffle. Below we round up key sector responses.

Legal Viewpoint: Why Stonehenge road decision was based on poor foundations

Legal Viewpoint: Why Stonehenge road decision was based on poor foundations

The government plainly needs to up its game. The three most recent decisions of its secretaries of state to approve development consent orders (DCOs) for nationally significant infrastructure projects against examiners’ recommendations have all been quashed: the Norfolk Vanguard wind farm, Manston Airport and now the A303 trunk road improvement in Wiltshire.

Freeports provide an fresh opportunity for planners to make a difference, by Graeme Bell

Freeports provide an fresh opportunity for planners to make a difference, by Graeme Bell

With eight new freeports set to come forward in England, the potential to boost regional economies – and level up more deprived parts of the country – is there. Planners must be on hand to ensure the effects are reaped by the many.

Local Plan Watch: Council mulls allocating 12,500 homes on greenfield sites in updated plan

Local Plan Watch: Council mulls allocating 12,500 homes on greenfield sites in updated plan

A local authority in Hampshire is considering proposals to build 12,500 homes on three large greenfield sites in its updated local plan, to help meet a higher housing target.

The policy and legislation changes to expect this autumn

The policy and legislation changes to expect this autumn

New housing secretary Michael Gove and his reshuffled ministerial colleagues have bulging in-trays, with the government’s response to the planning white paper, royal assent to the Environment Bill and an update on the infrastructure planning review are all expected soon.

Seven court rulings to look out for this autumn

Seven court rulings to look out for this autumn

Important cases due to be heard by the courts between now and November, including headline summaries of the issues in dispute

Further updated: 16 key changes to national planning policy in the revised NPPF

Further updated: 16 key changes to national planning policy in the revised NPPF

Strengthened requirements on design quality and the use of trees in new developments, as well as revised policies on plan-making, removing statues and opting out of permitted development (PD) rights are among the alterations in the revised version of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

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