Planning enforcement expected to be simplified by West Northamptonshire Council under new plan

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'We want to make sure our planning enforcement process makes sense to people'

The approach to planning enforcement across West Northamptonshire is expected to be simplified by the council's cabinet tomorrow (Tuesday, October 12).

The old councils for Northampton, Daventry and South Northamptonshire had slightly different approaches so the new unitary authority wants to align them.

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The council has also tried to make the new enforcement plan easy to read and understand with clear timescales for dealing with cases.

Councillor Rebecca BreeseCouncillor Rebecca Breese
Councillor Rebecca Breese

Cabinet member for planning, Rebecca Breese, said: “We want to make sure our planning enforcement process makes sense to people.

“As we have a limited number of staff to deal with cases, it’s important that we prioritise those that are likely to cause the greatest harm to communities or the environment.

“We must also make sure we balance the views of complainants with the need for growth in both housing numbers and business premises.

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“In many cases, developers will have breached the planning permission they’ve been granted but what they have built would have been acceptable had they applied for it.

“One thing we’re aware of, though, is that the process can be a little difficult to understand and we want to remedy that and improve our responses to these complaints.”