One in three Northern Ireland planning appeals allowed

Around one third of planning applications in Northern Ireland which went to appeal last year were approved, according to a report.

Northern Ireland: PAC faced 'significant challenges' last year
Northern Ireland: PAC faced 'significant challenges' last year

Northern Ireland’s Planning Appeals Commission (PAC), which deals with environmental and planning appeals, said in its annual report that it received 305 appeals in 2016/17 and that the overall success rate was 28 per cent.

This is largely in line with past trends. In 2015/16, the rate was 34 per cent which, according to the report, reflected the average over the previous five years.

Most appeals (74 per cent) were against councils’ decisions to refuse planning permission or grant it with conditions - slightly higher compared to 70 per cent the previous year.

A total of 53 (18 per cent) appeals were enforcement related - representing a fairly static trend over the last three years.

Of the appeals against a planning decision, the biggest category was for a single dwelling in the countryside (46 per cent), followed by multiple housing (13 per cent) and renewable energy (10 per cent).

Andrea Kells, the head of the commission, said in the report that the organisation had faced "significant challenges" last year, "having to operate within an environment of reduced resources and personnel changes".

Kells added that the commission would "need to look at different and better ways of delivering our services and I look forward to leading the organisation as we move forward".


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