Recent events in the United States have given us all reason to reflect on the value and nature of democracy. Against this background comments from a planning inspector in a recent appeal decision (DCS Number 200-009-796) provide an important reminder that we operate a plan-led system built upon community involvement:-
“Whilst the PPG [Planning Practice Guidance] provides direction on how the Framework’s provisions could be applied, it should not be read as an extension to it. Indeed, the PPG does not set out mandatory requirements and has not been subject to the rigours of external scrutiny or consultation.”
“….the PPG is merely guidance and … the development plan remains the starting point for decision making.”
Further information concerning the primacy of development plans is to be found at section 4.2 of DCP Online.