The Government is hoping to consult on an updated National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) by the end of March 2018. A consultation was held previously in December 2015, but the timeline for implementing changes had since slipped.
In July 2016, then-Housing Minister Gavin Barwell (now Theresa May’s Head of Staff) said he was expecting to publish revisions to the NPPF in the autumn. This came after the Government had previously said the changes would be made in the summer.
The most recent timeline update came during a session of the House of Commons Communities and Local Government Committee. Melanie Dawes, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, said she expected the new NPPF to be ready for consultation before Easter. Ms Dawes said the consultation will “include measures on which we have already consulted on as individual measures … and also some measures announced in the Budget which are yet to be consulted on”.
Specific measures that may be in the consultation include a proposal to take allocated sites out of local plans where “there is no prospect” of a planning application being submitted for their intended use. Another proposed measure would require local authorities to grant housing permissions for land outside development plans on condition that a “high proportion” of the homes built are offered for discounted sale for first time buyers or for affordable rent.