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Six tests for campaigners to assess the new planning bill

6th July 2021

CPRE has joined forces with a wide-ranging group of wildlife, heritage and planning organisations to urge the government to change the proposed planning ‘reforms’ to make people and nature the priority.

Featured in the Times today, our ‘6 tests for planning’ uses the governments own words from their Planning White Paper as a checklist to assess whether the Planning Bill announced in the Queen’s Speech will deliver.

We know good planning can provide nature-friendly, low carbon, affordable homes with people’s health and well-being at the forefront – now we’re calling on the government to follow through with a Bill that really will deliver.


Our 6 areas on the scorecard, to be awarded amber, green or red, are:-

  • Local democracy: retain and enhance genuine and accessible community participation and accountability throughout the planning process in all areas – 81 Neighbourhood Plans have been made/adopted in Herefordshire and all the participants deserve for their choices to be respected;
  • Affordable homes: deliver an evidenced strategy to build affordable homes and provide local authorities with the power to turn down developments which do not deliver affordable housing – lack of affordable housing is as we know a particular problem in rural counties like ours;
  • Climate emergency: Accelerate climate action to meet the UK’s net zero targets and ensure that local planning authorities are empowered to deliver climate-friendly developments;
  • Nature: Protect sites important for biodiversity and nature’s recovery, and require enhancement of nature in all developments;
  • Heritage: The conservation of heritage and designated landscapes are safeguarded against inappropriate development and;
  • Health: Embed human health, wellbeing and equality in the planning system, including priorities for access to natural green space, active travel and reducing air pollution – of particular interest to CPRE Herefordshire is how an enhanced planning system could work to reduce pollution of our rivers.
New development in the countryside
Barbara Bromhead-Wragg