Preparing and Delivering Effective Local Plans

housing & housing services

local government

08:45 - 15:45

Wednesday 8 November 2017

The Hatton- etc Venues, Central London

This Forum offers delegates the opportunity to explore the latest policies and methods in establishing effective local plans. Attendees will gain insight from leading policy figures, outlining the most recent government policies and funding opportunities surrounding local planning. The forum will also provide the opportunity to hear from best practice case studies, outlining how local authorities can generate efficient long-term strategies for their areas and improve their overall planning procedures.


This Forum is specifically designed for Local Authorities and the wider public sector including Heads of Planning and Development, Directors of Housing and Environment, Neighbourhood Planning Officers, Growth and Strategy Team Leaders, Councillors, Planning Policy Officers and Place Strategy Managers. This Forum is open to Private and Voluntary sectors to encourage networking and partnerships.

Key Speakers Confirmed:
  • Sarah Richards, Chief Executive, Planning Inspectorate
  • Councillor Toby Elliott, Member, Local Plans Expert Group
  • Catriona Riddell, Strategic Planning Specialist, Planning Officers Society
*Click here to see other speakers and detailed programme*


Policy Background

As of January 2017, 43% of local authorities in England are yet to publish a draft local plan. The housing white paper, Fixing our Broken Housing Market, released in the following month, makes particular reference to insufficient local authority planning and limited community engagement as a principal cause of delays to housing construction and the broken housing market more broadly. The lack of direction from local authorities, combined with only 11% of land in England being built upon has seen on average only 160,000 new homes being built a year. This is significantly below the number of houses needed to meet the population’s needs and is a major reason behind the UK’s broken housing market.

In response, in April 2017, the government passed the Neighbourhood Planning Act designed to fix various faults within the system and make producing plans easier for local authorities. By introducing the Housing Infrastructure Fund worth £2.3 billion, the government is looking to close the gap between when planning permission is granted and the start of new homes being built. Further investment into local authority infrastructure is planned to help simplify and streamline the planning process. The new law also introduces criteria allowing central government to intervene should local authorities fail to meet their planning commitments.

In light of the growing housing crisis and the need for decisive local planning, the responsibility now falls upon local authorities to rise to the challenge and effectively implement the government’s policy changes. Local planning authorities must partner with their local communities and central government to ensure plans are produced quickly, efficiently and tackle the major issues facing the UK housing market.

View the Agenda


Registration, Refreshments and Networking


Chair’s Welcome Address

Hannah David, Director, Planning Futures (CONFIRMED)


Morning Keynote: Outlining Changes to the Planning Process at a Local Level

  • Providing an overview of  the March 2016 Report to the Communities Secretary and to the Minister of Housing and Planning
  • Introducing new requirements for local authorities for reviewing or updating plans, to reduce the gap between granting planning permission and building starting
  • Reviewing the revised National Planning Policy Framework and what it means for Local Authorities
  • Outlining the government’s fix term deadline, in which local authorities must update their neighbourhood plans within 5 years to ensure the needs of their local community are being met
  • Supporting local authorities in transitioning to the new planning framework, designed to speed up the neighbourhood planning at a local level
  • Defining the criteria in which central government would intervene in local authorities planning process if they fail to submit plans, as outlined in the Neighbourhood Planning Act 2017

Councillor Toby Elliott, Member, Local Plans Expert Group (CONFIRMED)


Special Keynote: Maintaining Excellence Throughout the Planning Process

  • Understanding how to prepare a plan that is consistent with national policy in accordance with the national planning policy framework (NPPF), to identify how land is used, and determine what will be built where
  • Outlining how to effectively work with Planning Inspectors to avoid any delays when establishing or implementing neighbourhood planning
  • Understanding how to carry out a fast track review of specific policies within local plans
  • Ensuring that plans are up to date to help justify existing housing targets against objectively assessed housing requirements

Sarah Richards, Chief Executive, Planning Inspectorate (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Case Study: Shaping Local Plans to Support Regional Growth

  • Delivering economic growth and successful neighbourhoods through Local Plans
  • Analysing what is needed to drive success
  • Planning together across regions and economic corridors

Antoinette Jackson, Chief Executive, Cambridge City Council (CONFIRMED)


Partnering with the Local Community and Neighbourhood Forums to Streamline the Planning Process

  • Developing a network of enterprising community-led organisations designed to support each other, create expert solutions and push government communities policies
  • Providing direct support to neighbourhood forums through guidance and online templates to ensure high quality plans are designed, via Locality’s online Neighbourhood Planning Roadmap Guide
  • Introducing ‘See for Yourself’, a learning visit project for community groups and local authorities designed to showcase innovative planning approaches
  • Outlining funding opportunities and crowdfunding strategies available to support local community planning projects

John Wilkinson, Neighbourhood Planning Programme Officer, Locality (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Outlining the Process and Procedures for Submitting a Successful Draft Local Plan

  • Explaining Haringey Councils journey of creating and submitting a successful local plan
  • Defining the need for clear monitoring policies throughout the drafting phase, ensuring a smooth and streamlined creation process
  • Outlining key issues needing consideration during the drafting stages, including views on a vision, objectives, sustainable resources, environmental protection, and meeting local resident’s needs
  • Undertaking extensive consultations and preparing evidence documents prior to submitting the plan to the Secretary of State for examination by an independent inspector

Lyn Garner, Strategic Director of Regeneration, Planning and Development, Haringey Council (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Lunch and Networking


Afternoon Keynote: Supporting Planning Officers to Ensure Local Plans are Effective and Pass Examination

  • Providing planning ‘health checks’ to over 70 local authorities to ensuring they prepare strong local plans that will pass examination, focus on planning fundamentals and benefit the local area
  • Delivering appraisal workshops to local government planning teams, ensuring their plans are sound and pass examination by assessing them against the National Planning Policy Framework
  • Bringing together local authorities through supported learning groups to share best practice experiences and explore challenges of the planning system
  • Training local authority planning officers to correctly prepare themselves to effectively engage and pass the examination process

Catriona Riddell, Strategic Planning Specialist, Planning Officers Society (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Developing an Effective and Efficient Local Neighbourhood Strategy

  • Exploring an overview of neighbourhood planning in Leeds – the challenges and the opportunities
  • Outlining how the right type of LPA support for neighbourhood planning can produce results – Walton (parish), Holbeck (inner city)
  • Examining the key lessons from over five years of neighbourhood planning
  • Looking to the future – ensuring neighbourhood planning is efficient, effective, joined-up and complimentary

Ian Mackay, Neighborhood Planning Manager, Leeds City Council (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Case Study: Examining How Local Authorities Can Enhance Direct Provision of Housing through Planning

  • Promoting greater understanding of existing and emerging local authority planning practices in providing housing
  • Addressing the causes of delays to housing delivery: Uncertainties in making local plans, failures to identify housing sites and the length of time spent in negotiation over affordable housing
  • Enabling the planning sector to understand the mechanisms available to translate planning permissions into delivery of housing
  • Considering the relative role of planning in these initiatives, including the extent to which planners are aware of and engaged in innovative practices and how these local authority methods of providing housing can be incorporated into planning evidence and supply side calculations

Dr Janice Morphet, The Bartlett School of Planning, University College of London (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Overcoming Challenges and Creating an Effective Local Plan through a Master Planned Approach

  • Outlining the journey from incremental development to a master planned approach – the story of the Strategic Development Locations
  • Analysing key successes throughout the planning process, how these have been monitored and lessons learnt
  • Examining challenges moving forwards to future delivery including those from the national planning system

Mark Cupit, Assistant Director Delivery & Infrastructure and Councillor David Lee, Wokingham Borough Council (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Chair’s Summary and Close

*programme subject to change

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