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London Forum Updates

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Spending payments by developers for CIL and Section 106

Posted on: 6 October 2019 at 11:11:48
New laws have come into effect requiring councils to publish an annual report disclosing the size of their S.106 and CIL payments received and how much they have spent. The National Guidance on this subject is here.
Property Week asked 343 local authorities for details of such receipts and from the 300 responses received they calculated that more than £2.5bn – or 63% – of the money they were paid by developers remains unspent.
Some Councils said that the money is earmarked for large infrastructure projects in preparation for major development and that may apply to some London boroughs. They can agree to pool CIL payments for major projects.
However, 15% of CIL (capped at £100 per dwelling) is supposed to be used in agreement with the community local to a development and that rises to 25% (uncapped) if an approved Neighbourhood Plan exists.
Civic and community groups should ask when their local Council's annual report on S.106 and CIL payments will be published and enquire about the plans to spend them.

MHCLG publishes National Guidance on Design

Posted on: 1 October 2019 at 23:05:09
National design guidance has been published by the Government. The guide aims to illustrate how well-designed places that are beautiful, enduring and successful can be achieved in practice.
All local authorities must respond to it with site and area design codes in their Development Plan plus Site Allocations on what will and will not be acceptable. Design panels will have to be introduced to consider planning applications of significance.
Civic and community groups should check what their borough intends to do. 
Without the design policies in place, wrong development will have to be permitted that might not deliver what is required and could be unsuitable for local context and character.
The Mayor intends to prepare a London Supplementary Planning Guide on design of developments and localities.

Letter to Mayor re NLP small sites policies

Posted on: 27 September 2019 at 16:51:52
In the 'What We've Said' page of the London Forum web site there is a letter to the Mayor seeking a delay in implementing the small sites policies in the draft New London Plan (NLP).
There are other documents in that page about many organisations' responses to those policies and the London Forum comments on them that were sent to him to support the request.
London Forum wants all boroughs to be given time to modify their local Development Plan to have design codes, context and character anlyses, Site Allocations and other policies that will manage the use of small sites. Unfortunately, the policies in the draft NLP introduce a presumption in favour of development on any small site.

Design essentials for an energy-efficient building

Posted on: 27 September 2019 at 16:44:17
The RIBA has published an article on this subject here.

Community grants

Posted on: 22 September 2019 at 17:07:28
For 2019 the National Lottery good cause funders issued descriptions of two types on grants, one for communities and one for heritage. There is a web page for the community fund with more information and application links.
Your borogh may issue its own method of making similar grants available, using local Council funds also. As an example, LB Hounslow has done that here.
Do take the opportunity to bid for and apply funds to improve your area.
If you have an application pending, please note the change in process from 1st October, as here.

RTPI report on boroughs building new homes

Posted on: 15 August 2019 at 15:18:57
The RTPI has issued the following update:-
"As increasingly recognised across the main political parties and commentators, one major reason for the 'housing crisis' is that local authorities ceased their role of direct housing providers in the 1980s. Since then, the shortfall in housing provision has mirrored the scale of the former local authority contribution to the market.
In 2017 and 2019 the RTPI published two pieces of research to explore how local authorities are returning to housebuilding in England. The ultimate aim is to understand the role of planning in facilitating the delivery of affordable and high quality housing by local authorities. This will mean we can (1) develop practice advice to promote best practice, and (2) develop recommendations for policymakers and other stakeholders to enable local authority housebuilding to flourish."
A further report on this study was published on 31st July 2019.
Read the summary report here or the full version here.

August 2019 newsletter of Green Spaces Friends Network

Posted on: 14 August 2019 at 17:14:43
The August 2019 edition of 'Our Patch!' the newsletter of the London Friends of Green Spaces Network is available here.
It has articles on

  • Create a FREE 'tree trail' for your park - special offer

  • 60 London Park Friends Groups on Go Parks - Have you listed yours

  • Community Green Space Grants

  • Save Protected Land at Green Dale Fields in Southwark

  • Garden History Course available at the Garden Museum

  • A new book to mark Finsbury Park's 150th. Happy Birthday!

  • Help map urban tree canopy cover and make parks count.

  • London is now officially a National Park City

  • Updates to national advertising guidance

    Posted on: 12 August 2019 at 11:49:40
    The Government has revised guidance on advertising which can be seen here.The most recent changes are dated 22 07 2019 and the document can be searched for those.The deemed consent for advertisements displayed on the glazed (external) surface of telephone kiosks previously granted under Class 16 of Schedule 3 to the Regulations was removed with effect from 25 May 2019.Other changes are to guidance for the types of advertisement that need express consent.Local authorities can restrict advertising and take action against fly-posting and unauthorised advertisements. The procedures are described.The list of National Planning Practice Guidance on all subjects is here.Civic and amenity societies may find it useful to see what enforcement action or controls their borough can apply and the guidance that should be taken into account in local decision making. As notified by an update in February 2019, Westminster City Council has won a landmark ruling on permitted development that experts say will help local authorities refuse proposals in future for additional telephones and wifi services on pavements that are connected to an advertising panel. Details are here.

    Charity Commission guidance on ‘public benefit’

    Posted on: 8 August 2019 at 16:20:20
    It is over five years since the Government published its requirement for charities to deliver public benefit and to report upon their achievements in doing so.
    The brief details are here and the guidance of the Charity Commission is here.
    This is a reminder that London Forum’s members should check that their charitable objects, purposes, targets and work are suitable for delivering and assessing public benefit. They should also include in their annual reports a statement that their trustees have had regard to the Charity Commission’s guidance on public benefit.

    Posted on: 8 August 2019 at 15:45:42

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