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  6. News round-up 3 May 2012

News round-up 3 May 2012

'Super sewer' developments

On 24 April 2012 Communities Secretary Eric Pickles withdrew his Direction served on the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham and the London Borough of Wandsworth of 28 February 2012 requiring specific sites needed for Thames Water’s Tideway Tunnel project – known as the ‘super sewer’ - to be safeguarded.

He simultaneously served a new Direction with immediate effect on the London Borough of Wandsworth and the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham.

This directs the two councils not to grant planning permission in respect of any development on any land to which the Direction relates, without his specific authorisation

A spokesman for the Department for Communities and Local Government said: “Following legal advice, the Direction of 28 February 2012 was withdrawn and a new Direction on 24 April 2012 served with immediate effect. The new direction still prevents planning permission being granted on specific sites but has removed some of the additional requirements.”

Access the Direction.


Eastbourne development

Legal & General is reconsidering its plans to redevelop Eastbourne’s Arndale centre after the borough council gave consent for an edge-of-town retail park.

 The council has granted planning permission for proposals from Prudential Assurance for a new cinema and retail units at Sovereign Harbour on the outskirts of the town.

The officer’s report recommended approval, subject to a number of conditions including restrictions on the goods permitted to be sold but the planning committee decided against any restrictions.

Legal & General, which recently submitted detailed plans for the long-awaited redevelopment of the Arndale shopping centre in the centre of Eastbourne, said it was now reconsidering its own plans.


Planning framework checklist help

The Planning Advisory Service has produced checklists for local planning authorities on key points from the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) in relation to policies as well as local plans.

Access the PAS checklist.


Brentford waterfront project

ISIS Waterside Regeneration has lodged a detailed planning application for phase one of its proposed mixed use scheme with Hounslow Borough Council.

The developer secured outline planning consent for the 520 residential unit scheme, situated on the banks of the Grand Union Canal in Brentford, in March 2012 and is pressing ahead with the next stage of planning for the 11 acre development site, known as Brentford Lock West, located off Commerce Road.


Climate change advice

The first sector-led environmental planning guidance of its kind since the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) took effect last month has been launched by the Planning and Climate Change Coalition.

This initiative provides advice on planning for climate change and is the result of a collaborative initiative involving over 35 cross-sector organisations led by the Town and Country Planning Association and Friends of the Earth.

The guidance is aimed primarily at local authorities, private sector practitioners, Local Enterprise Partnerships and Local Nature Partnerships who want both to tackle climate change and to reap the positive economic benefits that solutions such as renewable energy, sustainable transport and building flood resilience can bring.

Read the TCPA and Friends of the Earth press release.


Green light for Yorkshire gas storage project

The East Riding of Yorkshire Council has resolved to approve a revised planning application by E.ON for its proposed Whitehill gas storage facility, subject to the completion of a Section 106 agreement.

The Whitehill gas storage project will consist of 10 underground storage caverns which will be built nearly 2km below the surface.

The first caverns could be commissioned as early as 2017/18. When complete the facility would be capable of storing up to 400 million cubic metres of gas.


New director for SAVE named

Clementine Cecil has been appointed as the new Director of SAVE, the historic buildings pressure group. She replaces William Palin who is set to leave the charity at the end of May, after four years at the helm. He will pursue writing and restoration projects.

Clementine Cecil is well-known to SAVE, having worked on SAVE Europe's Heritage reports on Moscow and Samara. Before that (from 2001-2004) she was Moscow correspondent at The Times.


Clarkson loses path battle

Jeremy Clarkson has lost a legal battle in a dispute over public access to a path near his Isle of Man home.

The Top Gear presenter and his wife, Frances claimed that having a public path so close to their lighthouse property breached their human rights.

But a court ruling in the Isle of Man has dismissed the claim and insisted that the footpath would remain in place as recommended in a recent public inquiry.

The case arose after ramblers complained Clarkson had diverted a path on the Langness peninsula in the south of the Isle of Man.


York Core Strategy headaches

York City Council has signalled that it may take as long as six months to respond to a planning inspector’s concerns over the “soundness” of its Core Strategy raised at an exploratory meeting with the planning authority.

The concerns included housing issues, compliance with the legal requirements of the Strategic Environmental Assessment regime and whether the council had fulfilled the “duty to cooperate” provisions of the Localism Act.


New president for planning officers

Malcolm Sharp is set to become the new president of the Planning Officers Society. He is due to be inaugurated at the society's annual meeting in Bournemouth on 11 May.

Malcolm Sharp is managing director at Huntingdonshire DC having formerly been director of environmental and community services and previously head of planning services at the authority.

He joined Huntingdonshire in 1997, from Nottingham City Council where he had spent over 20 years and held several senior planning roles ranging across policy, local planning, development management and implementation. 

Before that he was employed by Northampton Development Corporation, after starting his career with the London Borough of Hackney.


Roger Milne

3 May 2012