Overview of the legislation published during the summer

Overview of the legislation published during the summer

Prior to the Policy Paper’s publication several pieces of legislation were announced, published and/or came into force. The first four listed below are elements of planning reform and not responses to the COVID-19 lockdown:
 
  1. Significant changes to the Use Classes Order will come into force in September. Changes to town centre use classes will allow far greater flexibility to change uses within town centres without the need to obtain planning permission, restricting the ability of local planning authorities to control the mix of uses. The changes provide for three new uses classes: Class E (Commercial, business and service), Class F.1 (Learning and non-residential institutions) and F.2 (Local community). Among the changes, shops (A1), financial/professional services (A2), cafés/restaurants (A3), indoor sports/fitness (D2 part), medical health facilities (D1 part), creche/nurseries and office/business uses (B1) will be subsumed into a new single Use Class E. Pubs, bars, cinemas, live performance venues and dance and bingo halls will be sui generis. See Fundamental changes to high street use classes and our summary of changes to the Use Classes Order.
     
  2. Permitted development right to demolish commercial and/or residential and build residential in its place come into force on 31 August (Part 20 Class ZA). See Tubthumping: knock down and rebuild permitted development rights.
     
  3. In addition to this new right, there will be five permitted development rights to add storeys to create residential floorspace. The first published of these – Part 20 Class A for additional storeys to residential buildings– comes into force on 1 August. The other additional storeys PDRs (Part 20 Classes, AA, AB, AC and AD) will come into force on 31 August and are explained in New homes: extending into the sky!
     
  4. Legislation removing permitted development rights for the demolition of theatres, concert halls and live music performance venues will be drafted.
     
  5. The life of certain planning permissions and listed building consents and the time periods for the submission of certain reserved matters approvals will be extended by legislation inserted into the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. The same legislation, introduced by the Business and Planning Act 2020 will also allow for planning permissions that expired between 23 March 2020 and 18 August 2020 to be revived, subject to an additional environmental approval. See Business and Planning Act 2020: reviving or extending permissions and consents.
     
  6. Provisions allowing fast track applications to be made to modify construction hours came into force on 28 July. See New route for amending construction working hours conditions.
     
  7. The temporary amendments to the CIL Regulations, which give some relaxations for SMEs with a turnover of less than £45 million are now in force and covered in the blog CIL-ing out? Deferred payments for struggling SMEs but no wider relief.
     
  8. Applications for temporary pavement licences, which combine licencing and planning permission, may now be made to local planning authority. Please see ‘A Licence to Refill’.
     
  9. Regulations temporarily removing the requirement for the spatial development strategies and local plan documents to be available for inspection and for physical copies of documents to be available on request come into force on 12 August.