• Bowbridge Land

Earls Barton planning appeal allowed

The Secretary of State recovered the planning appeal at Station Road, Earls Barton citing conflict with the emerging neighbourhood plan but crucially noted that it had yet to be examined, put to referendum and made part of the development plan in stark contrast to his Inspector who didn’t consider the application was premature given the neighbourhood plan’s status.

In this landmark judgement it is clear that post-election, the new Secretary of State is evidently guided by his own NPPF policies – on the 29 October appeal decision he stated “as there is not a 5-year supply of deliverable housing sites, the relevant policies for the supply of housing in the emerging EBNP (Earls Barton Neighbourhood Plan), including the proposed village development boundary, should not be considered up to date”. The decision was published one day before the neighbourhood plan referendum – an advanced state according to the PPG.

This Earls Barton decision marks a move towards acceptance that where housing supply policies are out of date, this applies equally to neighbourhood plans as it does to local plans. This gives more comfort to appellants over neighbourhood plans that seem to operate outwith the planning process.

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