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Planning Market Insight Report: 63,497 planning applications submitted throughout May

The headlines

For the second month in a row, planning application submission numbers have dropped from the peak we saw in March. A total of 63,497 planning applications submitted throughout May 2021, a 3% decrease on the previous month.

Compared to May 2020, when the country was starting to recover from the initial lockdown restrictions, there has been an increase of 52%.

The average number of applications submitted per working day in May was 2,710; an increase of 54% daily.

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Planning news – 10 June 2021

High Court upholds council’s decision to refuse Ocado’s plans for new depot
The High Court has dismissed online supermarket Ocado’s judicial review claim against Islington Council’s refusal for its application for a 24/7 online grocery distribution centre in Tufnell Park.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

Key workers prioritised for flagship First Homes development
The government has announced that discounted homes will be available for local people and key workers as part of the flagship First Homes scheme to be delivered near Bolsover, Derbyshire.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

Councils to be enabled to ‘tackle exploitation’ on mobile home sites
Housing and rough sleeping minister Eddie Hughes has set out stricter rules to ‘clamp down’ on the ‘small minority’ of rogue mobile site owners and managers, better protecting mobile home residents in England.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

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Planning news – 3 June 2021

A third of UK population covered by councils pledging net-zero
More than a third of the UK’s population is now represented by local authorities that are planning to reach net-zero emissions ahead of the government’s 2050 commitment.
Huw Morris, The Planner

Fire statement proposal for high-rise developments after Grenfell
Developers must submit a fire statement alongside a planning application for multi-occupied residential buildings under government proposals following the Grenfell Tower disaster.
Huw Morris, The Planner

London’s brownfield has the capacity for 400k homes
More than 400,000 homes within 1.5km of a town centre could be built on brownfield land in London, according to an AECOM report.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

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Planning application submissions: regional recovery at an all-time high

Regional planning application submission data from April indicates a reduction in the number of applications submitted across all regions when compared to March 2021.

The map shows the percentage change in applications by region from March 2021 to April 2021.

There is more to this data than meets the eye, however. None of these figures show more than a 19% decrease, and it should be taken into account that April has a reduced number of working days due to the Easter holidays.

When comparing April 2021’s figures to those of April 2020, the difference is significant. Regions in the North have seen large increases in application figures: a 92% increase on 2020 in the North East, and a 61% increase on 2019. Up until April 2021, the North East region has shown increases in the number of applications submitted month on month which helps to explain this vast difference. The North West follows at a close second, with an 85% increase when compared to April 2020.

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Planning news – 27 May 2021

Approval of build-to-rent homes on a high
In the first three months of 2021, 6,937 new build-to-rent homes were granted full planning permission in the UK during the first three months of 2021, according to research published 24 May.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

14 councils announced for national model design guide pilot
The 14 local planning authorities in England selected to apply the new National Model Design Code (NMDC) to their areas have been announced by housing minister Christopher Pincher.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

Views sought on Old Oak and Park Royal local plan
The Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC) has published a seven-week public consultation on changes to its local plan.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

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Planning applications in 2021: growth indicates increased confidence

Data collated by the Planning Portal so far this year shows that applications for home improvement projects continue to outperform the average rise in application volumes, as they have done consistently since applications bounced back from the shock of the first lockdown in spring 2020. In April 2021, Householder and associated consents were more than double the volume over the same period last year. Of course, last April bore the brunt of the COVID-19 impact, with application numbers for Householder consents 21 per cent lower than April 2019, but regardless – this represents a strong recovery well beyond expected baseline levels.

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Phishing and genuine requests for payment from the Planning Portal

Since 2002, the Planning Portal has helped to transform the planning process, making information and services simpler and more accessible for those involved in the process. However, as much as technology in general has brought much opportunity and convenience into our everyday lives, predictably there will always be those that try to exploit technology for their own gains.

Email fraud is often seen on a large scale, such as attacks on PayPal, HMRC or banking services, where ‘scammers’ use various tactics to gather account or bank details and get people to pay for products or services they haven’t agreed to. This is also known as ‘phishing’. Consequently, one of the important questions for users of the Planning Portal is, “How do I know that a request for payment of an application is genuine?”

Due to this risk with any online transaction, we advise that you please ensure you are vigilant and question any requests for payment or information from a source that you think is suspicious.

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Out of Home Advertising: adapting to the pandemic

The Planning Portal is in the unique position of receiving around 90 per cent of all planning applications submitted to Local Planning Authorities across England and Wales. Each month, we assess and publish this data in our Planning Market Insight Report. May’s report took a deep dive into Advertisement consent applications.

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Planning news – 20 May 2021

Government urged to consider flooding in planning bill
Flood Re and the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) have called on the government to make sure that new homes are not built in areas at risk of flooding.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

MPs to investigate how rural productivity can be boosted
An inquiry to explore how the rural economy can be boosted in a post Covid-19 world has been launched by a group of cross-party MPs and peers.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

Housing divide between young and old widens due to Covid-19
The coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated housing inequalities between the young and old, according to recent research.
Laura Edgar, The Planner

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Final call for speakers – Planning Portal Annual Conference 2021

Our event this year promises to bring together thought leaders, keynote speakers and exhibitors from across the planning industry for discussions, learning and networking at our four-day conference, delivered to you virtually.  

Do not miss out on your chance to be part of our event and submit your application to host a workshop, join our panel discussions or be a headline speaker.  

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