Policy & Legislation

Policy, legislation and guidance produced by the government or its designated bodies. Use adopted sections if you wish to see only policy or legislation in force or emerging sections if you are looking for consultation documents where central government is inviting opinion prior to the implementation of policy or legislation.

Sign up for our Policy & Legislation email news bulletin.Page Title RSS feed

Search the DCP manual of planning best practice

Adopted Policy & Guidance

Here you will find the most recently published government policy and guidance. These are all documents that have been adopted upon publication.

Adopted Legislation

Locate adopted legislation including Acts of Parliament and Statutory Instruments/Rules.

Consultations & Emerging Policy

Latest consultations and reports on government policy and guidance.

Legislation In Progress

Track the progress of legislation through the Westminster and Scottish Parliaments as well as the Welsh and Northern Ireland Assemblies.

Follow Us:

Fresh thinking on the DCP blog

  • Excepting the exceptional

    Despite being larger in scale than the existing dwelling a replacement dwelling has been allowed in rural north Wales, an inspector finding it to be of exceptional design (DCS Number...

  • The other rear elevation

    In determining an appeal against the refusal of a lawful development certificate for a rear extension to a mid terrace house in south London an inspector has found that the council...

  • Detective work

    Some detective work has resulted in a planning inspector deciding that an extension to a house in Derbyshire would not be inappropriate development in the green belt (DCS Number 400-026-608...

Policy & Legislation News

Planning system should be 'principally funded' by developer contributions, says white paper

Planning system should be 'principally funded' by developer contributions, says white paper

The government's new planning system should be "principally funded" by landowners and developers, while fees should continue to be set nationally but "cover at least the full cost" of processing applications, the planning white paper proposes.

What we know about the government’s planned Environmental Impact Assessment changes

What we know about the government’s planned Environmental Impact Assessment changes

The government says it will soon propose changes to the process by which the effect on nature of proposed major developments is spelt out for decision-makers. Earlier findings, increased consistency and nationwide data collection are among the aims. But some commentators fear potential reductions in environmental protection.

Policy & Legislation In Depth

Why financial, political and placemaking realities mean council mergers are about to increase, by Catriona Riddell

Why financial, political and placemaking realities mean council mergers are about to increase, by Catriona Riddell

Councils in Surrey recently announced that they were aiming to move from the current two-tier structure with eleven districts and one county council to unitary status, possibly one council, possibly two – that bit is still up for debate.

What the new permitted development right allowing homes to be extended upwards means for councils and applicants

What the new permitted development right allowing homes to be extended upwards means for councils and applicants

Uptake of a new permitted development right allowing homes to be extended upwards is likely to be restricted due to the complexity of the prior approval process and the limited number of properties eligible for such development, practitioners predict. But councils are concerned about the potentially harmful impact on design quality and planning team resources.

Why some fear the government's use class overhaul may be a threat to town centres

Why some fear the government's use class overhaul may be a threat to town centres

The government's shake-up of high street use classes will be "transformational", commentators agree, but some warn of unintended consequences that could threaten the town centres the changes are seeking to protect.

Time for radical reform? by Angus Walker

Time for radical reform? by Angus Walker

As we tentatively take steps towards easing the lockdown and returning to normality, there has been quite a lot of talk about using that return as an opportunity for more radical changes to the planning system.

How the new right to demolish old homes for new is likely to pan out

How the new right to demolish old homes for new is likely to pan out

The government has announced the introduction of a new permitted development right that would allow vacant commercial and residential buildings to be knocked down and replaced with housing. Some commentators believe that this “planning freedom” is likely to have so many restrictions that its impact will be limited.

The opportunities and threats presented by Jenrick’s broad new town centre use class

The opportunities and threats presented by Jenrick’s broad new town centre use class

Housing secretary Robert Jenrick has announced proposals to introduce a “broad” new use class as part of a package of measures to revitalise town centres. However, some commentators have warned that the move could have unintended consequences.

The implications of extending consents that lapse during the pandemic

The implications of extending consents that lapse during the pandemic

Plans to allow automatic extensions to planning permissions that are due to lapse during the Covid-19 crisis have finally been confirmed by the government, to the relief of the development sector. But the new measures throw up some potential challenges for decision-makers and developers where consents have already lapsed, say observers.

Why the new upwards extension permitted development right for blocks of flats may have limited uptake

Why the new upwards extension permitted development right for blocks of flats may have limited uptake

A new permitted development right allowing two-storey upwards extensions to purpose-built blocks of flats to create new homes comes into force next month.