North West

News and in-depth analysis of town planning changes, significant decisions and appeals, housing, retail, town centres and economic development in north west England.

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Latest North West News

Bolton Town Hall. Image:

Council has kept more than £100K it should have refunded to applicants for taking too long to determine proposals

A council has revealed that it has acted unlawfully by keeping more than £100,000 in planning application fees that should have been refunded to applicants due to their proposals not being determined on time.


‘Council wrongly kept hundreds of thousands of pounds of planning fees for up to ten years’

A report that a local authority has for up to ten years been keeping fees for planning applications that were not processed with a 26-week deadline and therefore should have been refunded leads our round-up of planning news in other media.

South Ribble Borough Council (Pic: Ian Greig CC BY-SA 2.0)

Council leader threatens legal action against ‘awful’ ministerial decision to allow 1,100 greenfield homes

A council leader has threatened legal action against a ministerial decision to overturn its refusal and allow 1,100 homes on an allocated greenfield site, describing the move as “awful” and one that will “cause utter chaos for generations”.

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North West In Depth

HS2 poster

What the government’s decision to ditch the northern leg of HS2 means for planners

Local authorities may have to delay plan-making work and developers reassess their proposals following the scrapping of the HS2 rail link north of Birmingham, while one authority is seeking compensation from the government for the resources it has invested in work related to the project.

Wirral Council (picture credit: Arthur C Harris)

Inspector dismisses appeals for 788 green belt homes because they would ‘undermine’ the plan-making process

An inspector has rejected a developer's appeal against the refusal of seven applications for a total of 788 homes on green belt land in Merseyside on the basis that the cumulative effect of the proposals - none of which are supported in the local authority's emerging local plan - would “undermine the plan-making process”.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer giving his keynote speech at the party conference on Tuesday. Image: Getty

Seven things we learned from the Labour Party conference

The Labour party held its annual conference in Liverpool this week. Here are seven things that we learned from the event.

Christopher Pincher (Pic: CPRE/YouTube)

Neighbourhood Watch: Pincher pledges more neighbourhood plans for the North

The government will take steps to increase uptake of neighbourhood plans in the North and the Midlands, housing minister Christopher Pincher has said.