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31/07/2017

Chief planner writes to officers about counter-terrorism role

Words: Laura Edgar
Steve Quartermain CBE

Steve Quartermain CBE has written to local authority planners across England reminding them of the important role the planning system has in counter-terrorism and crime prevention.

In the letter, issued this month (July), the government’s chief planner drew attention to paragraphs 58 and 69 of the National Planning Policy Framework.

These recommend that local planning authorities should ensure that their policies and decisions aim to create safe and accessible environments where crime and disorder do not undermine community cohesion and quality of life.

He also noted paragraph 164, which says that when preparing local plans, local authorities should work with local advisers to make sure they have taken into account the most up-to-date information about sites at risk from “malicious threats and natural hazards”, as well as steps that could be taken to reduce vulnerability and increase resistance.

Quartermain highlighted the design section of the Planning Practice Guidance (PPG), which includes crime convention and security measures.

He also writes that where appropriate, pre-application discussion between planning officers and security advisers like counter terrorism security advisers and police crime prevention design advisers “will ensure that authorities and applicants share an understanding… of the level of risk and the sort of measures available to mitigate the risk in a proportionate and well-designed manner”.

Quartermain’s letter can be found on the UK Government website (pdf).

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