Changes to NPPF and National Model Design Code – HMG Consultation

In their fourth planning consultation since August 2020, the Ministry for Housing Communities and Local Government launched a consultation on changes to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and a proposal for a new National Model Design Code (NMDC).

The changes to the NPPF are largely the result of responses to the previous three consultations: some are welcome clarifications or recognition of the significance of the Green Belt and Climate Change to planning policy, and some, together with the NMDC, reflect the Government’s Build Back Better & Beautiful post-covid objectives. However, the Government continues to fail to recognise the extent to which continuing extensions to Permitted Development undermine the integrity of the planning system and unacceptably reduces local democracy and the value placed on local input and preferences.

The Society welcomed the changes related to the climate emergency, but believes they have gone nowhere near far enough and requested more commitment to zero carbon homes and places.

The Society also welcomed the NMDC but would prefer its use not to be mandatory but as a reference source from which planning professionals select those ideas and formats most relevant to local circumstances. Local accountability and consultation should be re-emphasised.

The Society also made a number of detailed comments on both aspects of the consultation.

See the full ECS response to this consultation here