Planning Inspectorate publish an updated Inquiries Review Action Plan following Bridget

Inquiry

Today, 4 October 2019, the Planning Inspectorate have published an update to the
Inquires Review Action Plan (PDF, 813KB, 45 pages)

first published in May. The Action Plan sets out how the recommendations from the Rosewell Review into Planning Inquiries are being implemented. This update follows on from the visit paid to the Inspectorate by Bridget Rosewell on 19 September.

Since the publication of the Inquires Review findings in February 2019, significant progress has been made with over half of the 22 recommendations delivered and all others well under way. Most importantly, all planning appeal inquiries are now following the new inquiries process.

Progress against the 22 Recommendations

1Improving the submission and validation of appeals
2Reforming the statement of case
3Streamlining the process for deciding the appeal mode to be used
4Issuing a start letter more quickly
5Preparing for the inquiry (start letter to start of inquiry)
6Costs of the Inquiry
7Statements of Common Ground
8Requiring early inspector engagement
9Preparation in approaching the examination of the evidence
10The timely submission of inquiry documents
11Inspectorate to enforce timely submission of docs including with sanctions
12Encouraging early identification of Rule 6 parties
13The conduct of inquiries and the role played by inspectors
14Use of technology
15The role of interested parties during the event
16Allocation of time post inquiry for the inspector to write up the case
17Decisions made directly by the Secretary of State
18Inspector availability and the management of casework
19The number of withdrawn inquiry appeals
20The benefits of a policy feedback loop
21Implementing the proposals and monitoring future performance
22Reforming data collection and performance measurement

Since the start of issuing Decisions in the new ‘Rosewell style’ in March 2019, decisions from 15 inquiries have been issued using the new process and timeline all within the expected timeframe of 24-26 weeks; over 90% have been within 24 or less; under 10% within 26 weeks.

The Action Plan is a live document and will be updated again in February 2020 and June 2020.

/Public Release. View in full here.