Government to legislate to abolish Regional Strategies

The High Court ruled today that the decision of the Communities & Local Government Secretary, Eric Pickles, to abolish Regional Spatial Strategies was unlawful. The judgment in the case brought forward by Cala Homes threw the housing industry into confusion, with DCLG initially stating that the Secretary of State would not be appealing the ruling.

Calm was restored, however, this afternoon when Pickles wrote to MPs confirming the Government’s intention to legislate in next month’s Localism Bill to abolish Labour’s RSSs (you can view the letter here). DCLG also circulated a letter from the Chief Planner to local authorities and the Planning Inspectorate stating that the government’s intention to legislate should be treated as a material consideration in matters currently before them (view here).

Despite a brief break in the clouds for housing developers, it’s clear that Coalition’s government’s commitment to a new planning framework remains steadfast, meaning a continuation of the uncertainty that has been plaguing the industry since the General Election in May.

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