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So here it is, Merry Christmas…

by on December 18, 2013

So Christmas has rolled around once more and before we all charge off in search of sherry, Christmas pud and Settlers I thought I’d reflect on the year, offer up some key stats and share some thoughts on what 2014 might hold.

As ever we haven’t rested on our laurels. Budgets may be tighter than they have been in the past but we’ve managed to get continued investment from DCLG in the Portal service to improve and maintain it.

Some of the key work we’ve been involved in during 2013:

… which brings us neatly around to some stats for the year.

  • Over 360,000 applications were submitted through the Planning Portal – an increase of approximately 15 per cent on 2012
  • There were 1.95 million downloads of Building Regulations Approved Documents in 2013, an increase of approximately 26 per cent from 2012
  • We reported over 13.3 million visits to the website, an increase of approximately 25 per cent from 2012 – this is equivalent to the population of Ecuador, or Zimbabwe (according to Wikipedia).
  • All those electronic applications resulted in savings of around about 55,296kg (around 55 tons) of paper. To put that in some seasonal perspective this is the equivalent weight of over 300 reindeer.
  • A member of the Portal team won a gold medal representing England in the British and Irish Cross Country Championship – well done again, John!

Finally, came the decision to kick off the commercialisation of the Portal to drive further investment and service improvement, expect more on that in the New Year.

I can tell by our traffic stats that you’re all still beavering away submitting applications. As a result we increased our bandwidth last night to cope with the upsurge in submissions (more than 1,500 yesterday) and were expecting to peak at around 2,000 applications in a day before the weekend. Thanks to IBM for stepping in at short notice.

And finally a heartfelt thank you to all of you who have used the Portal in the last 12 months and to those of you who have taken the time to contribute to the blog.

Happy Xmas

Chris

5 Comments
  1. Roger Wyer permalink

    Well done – I remember sitting in a hotel room with other LA’s and the DCLG looking at 1 App and the future. Its all proved to be a great success.

    I also think the tone of your communications has helped a great deal – not so faceless central government…..

    I only wish you could help people like myself who just cannot get planners to go digital – we have to print all our portal apps back to paper!! Effectively it takes one of my staff to do this full time every day! Do you have any intelligence on who still does (LA’s) this or maybe you could ask in a future survey. Be handy to slightly embarrass the slackers….

    Best wishes
    Roger

  2. David permalink

    what is CIL

  3. John Newton permalink

    A Merry Christmas to you all ( even if some of the application/appeal uploads are too big!! )

  4. Penny Stephan permalink

    When did photographs/photo montages become mandatory supporting documents?

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