- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
- Specialist wikis
Last edited 11 Nov 2020
The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), published in 2012, defines development plans as; adopted local plans, neighbourhood plans and the London Plan, as described in section 38 of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004.
The planning system is plan-led, requiring that applications for planning permission are determined in accordance with the development plan unless material considerations indicate otherwise. Where the development plan is absent, silent or outofdate, planning permission should be granted unless:
- Any adverse impacts of doing so would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits, when assessed against the policies in the NPPF; or
- Specific policies in the NPPF indicate development should be restricted.
The NPPF defines Local Plans as, ‘The plan for the future development of the local area, drawn up by the local planning authority in consultation with the community. In law this is described as the development plan documents adopted under the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004. Current core strategies or other planning policies, which under the regulations would be considered to be development plan documents, form part of the Local Plan. The term includes old policies which have been saved under the 2004 Act.’ See Local Plan for more information.
Additional development plan documents, such as Supplementary Planning Documents (SPD) which provide more detailed guidance, should only be prepared where they are clearly justified and should not be used to add unnecessarily to the financial burdens on development. See Supplementary Planning Documents for more information.
The NPPF defines neighbourhood plans as, ‘A plan prepared by a Parish Council or Neighbourhood Forum for a particular neighbourhood area (made under the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004).’ See Neighbourhood Plan for more information.
Development plans may also include higher level plans, such as the London Plan. The NPPF makes clear that, ‘Regional strategies remain part of the development plan until they are abolished by Order using powers taken in the Localism Act. It is the government’s clear policy intention to revoke the regional strategies outside of London, subject to the outcome of the environmental assessments that are currently being undertaken.’
The London Plan is a spatial development strategy setting out an economic, environmental, transport and social framework for the development of London. It is only intended to deal with things of strategic importance to Greater London. Local plans prepared by the London boroughs should be in general conformity with the London Plan, and its policies guide decisions on planning applications by local planning authorities and the Mayor. See London Plan for more information.
NB The SuDS Manual published by CIRIA in 2015 suggests that a development plan: ‘Sets out the policies and proposals for the development, conservation and use of land and buildings in a particular local planning authority (LPA) area. It is the most important consideration for LPAs when they decide on a planning application. The plan generally includes development plan documents that are part of a LPAs local plan.’
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Development plan documents.
- Green belt planning practice guidance.
- Local development framework (abolished).
- Local development scheme.
- Local plan.
- Neighbourhood plan.
- Opportunity Area Planning Framework (OAPF).
- Planning authorities.
- Planning permission.
- Preferred options.
- Regional spatial strategies (abolished)
- Safeguarding land.
- Saved policies.
- Skeffington Report.
- Supplementary planning documents.
- The London Plan.
Featured articles and news
Many provisions came into force on June 28, 2022.
With room to expand.
Refurbishment, Energy Efficiency, Indoor air and process.
Why building acoustic considerations must be non-negotiable.
Aluminium Composite Panels (ACP) is one example.
Inventors and innovators at ICE.
Life, death and art at the Stuart court. Book review.
Real estate, place adaptation and innovation.
Review and comment on the revised draft before July 11.
Write about something you know, help us build and grow !
A blended event and triumphant return.
Mark Reynolds succeeds Andy Mitchell as Co-Chair of CLC
Designing Buildings is 10 years old.
From alteration to deconstruction on DB.
Understanding temperature in buildings on DB.
A call for home energy management to be modernised.
How many different types can you think of ?
Looking back and fourth to what still needs to be done.
Pioneering Indian environmental design Architect.
The greenest building is the one already built.
History of Temple Meads rewritten.
Currently standing at just 1%.
Find out more with BSRIA.
Changes come into force for F,L,O and S.