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News in brief: Heseltine to speak at RTPI event; 25-year environment plan review published

Words: Laura Edgar
Lord Heseltine / Shutterstock_525743752

A round-up of planning news: Tuesday 20 May, 2019

Heseltine to speak at RTPI event

Lord Heseltine has been confirmed as a speaker at a conference to be hosted by the RTPI in partnership with think tank the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR).

The ‘Planning for Northern People and Places’ conference will launch the RTPI’s ambitions for transforming the north of England through better planning. Heseltine will make a speech at the conference, responding to these ambitions and answering audience questions.

In 2016, the RTPI and IPPR North published a Blueprint for a Great North Plan, which builds on research and consultation with stakeholders across the North. Over the past 12 months the RTPI has been working with the University of Newcastle and Peter Brett Associates to develop a set of shared ambitions to advance strategic planning and governance across the North.

More details about the conference can be found on the RTPI website.


25-year environment plan review published

A review of the government’s 25-year environment plan has revealed that establishing more sustainable drainage systems has been delayed.

This measure forms part of the plan to reduce harm from environmental hazards. The review document states there has been a minor delay because of Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) “resources being reprioritised to aid EU-Exit preparations”.

The government's environment plan was published in January 2018.

The government claims that 90 per cent of the plan’s actions have been delivered or are being progressed, including a commitment to the first environment bill in 20 years and starting to create a Northern Forest.

Environment minister Thérèse Coffey said: “Through our landmark 25 Year Environment Plan and upcoming Environment Bill, we are committed to bold action on tackling plastic waste, reforming farming, protecting our landscapes and boosting wildlife. While progress is encouraging, we know there is still more to do.”

The 25 Year Environment Plan Progress Report can be found here on the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs website (pdf).


Leicestershire land sold with planning for affordable homes

A scheme comprising 88 homes will be built in Bottesford, Leicestershire, following the completion of a deal to sell the land with planning permission.

Of the 88 homes, 33 have been designated as affordable. A car park will be delivered and parking for the railway will be upgraded.

The scheme was brought to the market by land promoter Richborough Estates and will be delivered by Miller Homes. Property firm Fisher Germans completed the deal.

The landowner, along with Richborough Estates, is committed to delivering improvements to leisure and recreational facilities in the village.


Housebuilder and housing association join forces in the Midlands

Housebuilder Countryside and Midland Heart Housing Association have formed a partnership to deliver 1,000 homes across the Midlands over the next three years.

A third of these homes are at an advanced stage, according to the partnership.

The agreement supports Countryside’s plans to deliver a mix of affordable homes for sale and market rent homes in mixed-tenure communities.

The partnership is supported by Homes England, which has committed grant funding from its continuous market engagement process to boost affordable housing numbers.


Employment area proposed for Carnforth

A hybrid planning application has been submitted to Lancaster City Council for 90,000 square feet of employment space in Carnforth.

The site is off Kellet Road, adjacent to the M6.

Planning consultancy Barton Willmore submitted the application on behalf of SCP Investments Ltd.

Landscaping forms part of the scheme to provide greater biodiversity and a buffer between the development and the motorway.


Redevelopment of The Belfry teed up

Plans to increase the number of guest rooms at The Belfry Hotel and Resort and create 150 new jobs over the next two years have been unveiled.

Proposals also include the creation of a 600-seat ballroom and banqueting facility and a leisure club.

The owner, an affiliate of KSL Capital Partners LLC, plans to increase the number of guest rooms by 144 to 464. They will overlook the Brabazon Course.

Planning consultancy Lichfields has been appointed to take forward plans for the world-renowned Sutton Coldfield golf resort. A planning application is due to be submitted to North Warwickshire Borough Council in the summer.


Arup to advise on Manchester clean air plan

Environment and consultancy firm Arup has been appointed as lead adviser on the next stage in the development of the Greater Manchester Clean Air Plan.

Greater Manchester recently set out its proposals to reduce harmful nitrogen dioxide (NO2) air pollution across the whole of the city-region. The proposals cover all 10 Greater Manchester local authority areas, with the aim of bringing levels of NO2 emissions from road traffic to within legal limits by 2024.

As lead adviser, Arup and partner AECOM will work with the 10 councils and Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) to develop a full business case for a programme of measures for submission to central government by the end of 2019. The proposed interventions include setting up clean transport funds, establishing a Clean Air Zone and investment in electric vehicle-charging infrastructure.

The full business case will build on an outline business case submitted to government in March. A public conversation started earlier this month to be followed by a formal consultation later in 2019.

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