Below is a perfect example of how those in charge of our planning system, are speaking a totally different language from those raising major concerns about the impact recent changes to the system are having.
It’s not even a case of one speaking English and the other French, at least there’s half a chance of getting some understanding when you’re both from the same planet. Unfortunately, when it comes to the planning system, government ministers are from Mars and the objectors are from Venus. Indeed, some objectors might wish to suggest that ministers are (talking) from Uranus.
Anna Soubry, a Conservative health minister, wrote to Eric Pickles saying:
“planning inspectors are forcing local councils to accept more housing and build on Green Belt.”
“Notwithstanding the localism agenda, the National Planning Policy Framework, the abolition of the RSS [regional spatial strategies] and the repeated assurances of your good self and the Prime Minister”…………….. “local authorities like Rushcliffe and my own are unable to determine their own housing needs, set their own targets and protect their Green Belt land from development, ” she wrote to Mr Pickles.
Nick Boles, Eric Pickles junior minister for Planning replied:
Local councils are in control of their Green Belt boundaries, through local plans, which this Government put at the heart of the planning system to allow communities to deliver the right development for their local area.”
The key phrases here are “…unable to determine their own housing need…”, from Anna Soubry, compared to, “…to deliver the right development..”, from Nick Boles.
The clear lack of comprehension, let alone understanding, is that one wishes to reduce or even prevent development, whilst the other is saying, you can control where and what, but not if, or when. PINS understand this, but are currently being made the villains of the piece. All I can say is, don’t shoot the messenger.