Highgate Society responds to Planning White Paper
The Highgate Society submitted a detailed 19-page response to the Government’s consultation on its Planning White Paper, the proposals in which would fatally weaken planning in England, make development much easier, and make permissions automatic under certain circumstances. Worst of all, they propose to deprive communities of their historic right to have any future involvement in local town planning issues – notable depriving them of their historic right to comment on individual development applications, leaving them only the right to involvement in producing local plans every 10 years. This is little less than an existential threat to community groups across the country. Please look at our comments, and raise your concerns with your MPs and any Peers with whom you have connections, asking them to oppose the Planning Bill if and when it eventually appears, unless the concerns raised by ourselves and a host of other groups and bodies nationwide, both community and professional, about the damage it will cause are addressed. The Planning White Paper appears to have drawn unprecedented criticism – we understand that it drew 44,000 responses. We are very pleased to report that, on November 26th, the Society was one of 50 people and groups selected, out of 1,500 applicants, to give evidence on the Planning White Paper to a House of Commons Select Committee inquiry into its implications. We were given full opportunity to make our points, and we highlighted the concerns of the community sector as strongly as we could.