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News in brief: RTPI chief executive announces resignation; Councils launch consultation on Rugeley Power Station site

Words: Laura Edgar
Rugeley Power Station / Shutterstock_529731136

A round-up of planning news: Tuesday 25 July, 2017

RTPI chief executive announces resignation

Trudi Elliott, chief executive of the RTPI, has announced that she is standing down from the position.

Elliott, who has led the organisation since 2011, gave her resignation to the Board of Trustees at the Institute’s June board meeting.

In a bulletin released last week to RTPI members, board chair Graham Stallwood said that Elliott had stepped down with no new position on this horizon, but that she was looking forward to returning to living full-time in the West Midlands, where she is based.


Councils launch consultation on Rugeley Power Station site

Lichfield District Council and Cannock Chase District Council have launched a joint consultation on the future of the Rugeley Power Station site.

The power station, which straddles the border between the two councils, was decommissioned in 2016.

The consultation asks residents from across both areas how the site should be used. The Rugeley Power Station Development Brief Supplementary Planning Document proposes developing the land for a minimum of 800 homes and employment use, along with supporting infrastructure, including a school, open space, play facilities and public art.

Ian Pritchard, Lichfield District Council’s cabinet member for economic growth, development & environment, said: “The site is ideally located for a new housing and business development with its links to Rugeley and Lichfield, while being close to open countryside and with easy access to two railway stations.

“We will share the representations we get between both councils, and will consider all the comments together and feed them into our plans for the area.”

When adopted, the Rugeley Power Station Supplementary Planning Document will sit alongside both district councils’ local plans and help inform development proposals for the site.

The consultation can be found here.


London council secures affordable housing

The London Borough of Southwark has secured the return of nine more designated affordable housing units to affordable housing use following litigation in the High Court.

The nine flats are part of the Signal Building development at Newington Causeway in Elephant and Castle.

A section 106 agreement required the flats be used as affordable housing, but the defendants said a complex scheme of interconnected transactions freed the flats from the agreement. This would see the flats let out at market rent.

The 15 leasehold owners and five banks conceded the claim and consented to orders declaring that the flats were bound by a planning obligation designating them as affordable housing. The High Court judge approved the declarations.


NHS Property Services secures planning permission

NHS Property Services has secured planning consent on appeal for 290 new homes on the former St George’s hospital site in Hornchurch.

The consent includes the provision of 15 per cent affordable housing.

NHS Property Services is currently in the process of disposing of the property to generate funds to reinvest in the NHS.

A 1.6-hectare section of the 11.7-hectare site is being kept for a new 3,000 square metre health facility.

Marketing has started to find a buyer for the site. Savills has been appointed to handle the sale.


Cardiff pub to be converted

A disused Cardiff pub will be converted into terraced homes after Cardiff Council approved the scheme.

Planning permission was secured by planning consultancy WYG’s Cardiff planning team. Gower (Cathays) Limited instructed the team to provide planning and urban design support after a previous scheme was refused following strong opposition.

WYG said it supported Grasshopper PR with re-engaging the community on a redesign that is sensitive to the former pub’s heritage and the area’s character.

The scheme comprises 10 family homes in the Cathays area of the city.


Government publishes plans for UK aviation

The government has launched a consultation on how the aviation sector should respond to a range of technological, security, environment and customer service challenges.

The consultation considers new forms of compensation for noise or designing targets for noise reduction, and how to make the best use of existing capacity at all airports around the country.

Transport secretary Chris Grayling said: “Our new aviation strategy will look beyond the new runway at Heathrow and sets out a comprehensive long-term plan for UK aviation. It will support jobs and economic growth across the whole of the UK.

“Our vision puts the passenger at the heart of what we do, but also recognises the need to address the impacts of aviation on communities and the environment.”

The consultation can be found on the UK Government website.


Grayling backs Crossrail 2

Transport secretary Chris Grayling has said he is a ‘supporter’ of Crossrail 2 as he and Mayor of London Sadiq Khan announce they will look at what can be learned from Crossrail 1 ahead of the Autumn Budget.

A joint statement from the Department for Transport and the mayor’s office states that last week Grayling and Khan had a “productive” meeting to discuss the way forward for Crossrail 2.

The two have agreed that “there is no doubt” that London needs new infrastructure to support its growth and ensure that it continues to boost productivity and attract investment to the UK.

In the coming months they will examine ways to improve affordability while maximising the key benefits of the scheme, learning lessons from Crossrail 1, ahead of the Autumn Budget, says the statement.

Image credit | Shutterstock