Beware of ‘Planning in Principle’


The new Housing and Planning Act 2016 became law on 12th May. Section 150 of the Act gives “Permission in principle for development of land”

The question that needs to be answered is, what does this mean for sites such as Effingham Lodge Farm which are included in the Effingham Neighbourhood Plan. Does this mean that more houses could be built on the site than envisaged because ‘Planning in Principle’ has been agreed?


Adrian Atkinson letter to the Guildford Dragon says:Dragontitle1350px1 (1)

“This was going to be reserved only for recognised brownfield sites but now covers any site allocated by a planning process (Local or Neighbourhood plan) and adopted as part of a plan, including green field.”

Read more here

2 thoughts on “Beware of ‘Planning in Principle’”

  1. The GBC Local Plan (LP), now approved for public consultation, places the whole of Effingham Lodge Farm (ELF) is “High Sensitivity Green Belt” and also it is OUTSIDE the proposed insetting boundary.

    So why on earth do Eff. Parish council think it a good idea to include ELF in their Neighbourhood Plan. (NP).
    Surely the GBC LP gives every good reason NOT to include ELF in the NP.

    Furthermore, it is NPPF policy to prevent merging of adjacent villages by urban sprawl and also agricultural and forestry lands are excluded from the term “Previously Developed Land”. So why, in transgression of these policies, are EPC proposing building on ELF?

  2. To answer David’s questions, allocating just 1.2 hectares for up to six homes out of the total 19.7 hectares at Effingham Lodge Fram, and making it a condition that the rest of the land should be cleared and returned to agricultural or grassland use, gives ADDED planning policy protection to the open farmland at Effingham Lodge Farm.

    The proposal from Berkeley Homes for 159 new homes plus a rebuilt school on that land is then clearly contrary to the Emerging Neighbourhood Plan as well as to the 2003 Local Plan and the Emerging Local Plan. The ‘Permission in Principle’ provision would ONLY apply to the allocated site in the Neighbourhood Plan, which is just the 1.2 hectares to the west fronting Lower Road, with existing buildings on it. Do please take a look at policy SA3 of the Neighbourhood Plan, available on the Parish Council website.

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