Consultation on EEBC Draft Planning Enforcement Plan July 2021

The Society has responded at length to the Borough Council’s consultation, which ran from 28th May to 9th July, on their Draft Enforcement Plan, which purports to set out the way the Borough proposes to deal with potential planning breaches.

The EEBC document has not yet been put on their website but can be found via this link.

The Society believes that Planning Enforcement in the Borough has been weakening over the last few years, almost certainly as a result of resource constraints and the pressures of preparing a new Local Plan against a back-drop of ever-changing National Planning Policy and a significant increase in the volume of planning applications. The document reflects this, lacking detail and suggesting insufficient urgency and priority for effective dealing with most types of planning breach.

The Society has responded in detail to the consultation, suggested amendments and/or omissions in almost all sections of the document, and offered an additional 16 Comments and General Observations, many relating to enforcement support of climate change, bio-diversity and green heritage preservation. It should be noted in passing that other Local Planning Authorities have produced much more detailed and rigourous documents regarding Planning Enforcement. The Society has therefore requested an opportunity to discuss with the relevant Officers our comments and suggestions and, more generally, our views on the importance of stricter enforcement in planning matters, especially concerning unauthorised development or commercial activity and failure to abide by planning conditions when applications are permitted, to ensure greater compliance in future by both property owners and developers.

Our detailed comments can be seen here.