What consultants really think about the public sector and government policy

As part of the Planning Consultancy Survey 2019, we asked respondents for their views on various questions related to the outlook for the planning consultancy market, public sector performance, the impact of national policy and their aspirations for future policy changes. Their answers are listed below...

(Pic: Getty)
(Pic: Getty)

OUTLOOK FOR DEVELOPMENT AND PLANNING CONSULTANCY 

Q The economic climate for development will improve over the next 12 months. 

Agree: 12% 

Disagree: 36% 

Q Your planning consultancy team will grow within the next 12 months. 

Agree: 52%   

Disagree: 23% 

Q Your planning consultancy will contract within the next 12 months.

Agree: 4% 

Disagree: 83% 

PUBLIC SECTOR PERFORMANCE

Q A lack of resources for LPAs is a major constraint on local plan production and timely decisions on applications.

Agree: 92% 

Disagree: 5% 

Q LPAs should be able to increase planning application fees. 

Agree: 38%  

Disagree: 38%  

Q Paid-for Planning Performance Agreements are usually good value for money.

Agree: 26% 

Disagree: 43%  

Q Paid-for pre-application discussions are usually good value for money. 

Agree: 32% 

Disagree: 55% 

Q By and large, local authority decision-making performance is satisfactory. 

Agree: 21% 

Disagree: 67%

Q By and large, local authority plan-making performance is satisfactory. 

Agree: 14% 

Disagree: 75% 

Q Planning Inspectorate decision-making performance is satisfactory.

Agree: 34% 

Disagree: 48%  

IMPACT OF NATIONAL POLICY

Q Neighbourhood planning has increased residents’ ability to resist development. 

Agree: 62% 

Disagree: 15%    

Q Green belt policy imposes undue constraints on development and should be reviewed.

Agree: 75% 

Disagree: 18%    

Q The benefits of permitted development rights extensions in England since 2012 have generally outweighed any harm they might have caused.

Agree: 42% 

Disagree: 35%

Q The introduction of the standard method of calculating housing need has sped up local plan–making

Agree: 16% 

Disagree: 38% 

Q Planning regulations in England are a significant factor in limiting the extent of home ownership.

Agree: 28% 

Disagree: 45%

Q The introduction of the Housing Delivery Test is helping to boost housing delivery.

Agree: 12% 

Disagree: 29%  

Q Charging appellants fees for planning inquiries would be acceptable in return for a definite decision timetable, as long as the fees were appropriate to the size of the development and refunded if the appeal were to be successful.

Agree: 43% 

Disagree: 37% 

PUBLIC ATTITUDES

Q Public opposition to development is increasing.

Agree: 60% 

Disagree: 18%

Q Good design significantly improves a scheme's prospects of permission.

Agree: 77% 

Disagree: 8%  

SKILLS DEVELOPMENT 

Q We expect to offer RTPI-accredited degree-level apprenticeships in the near future.

Agree: 32% 

Disagree: 37%  

HOW THEIR OPINIONS HAVE CHANGED SINCE LAST YEAR

The economic climate for development will improve over the next 12 months.   

2018: 55% agree  2019: 12% agree   

Paid-for Planning Performance Agreements are usually good value for money. 

2018: 33% disagree  2019: 43% disagree   

Paid-for pre-application discussions are usually good value for money. 

2018: 43% disagree  2019: 55% disagree   

The benefits of permitted development rights extensions in England since 2012 have generally outweighed any harm they might have caused. 

2018: 21% disagree  2019: 35% disagree   

Planning Inspectorate decision-making performance is satisfactory. 

2018: 61% disagree  2019: 48% disagree   

Source: Responses to the Planning Consultancy Survey 2019


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