Priti Patel raises Hatfield Peverel planning decision in House of Commons

Posted on: July 23, 2019

Witham MP Priti Patel has called on the Government to reflect on the decisions taken to grant planning permission for development on two sites in Hatfield Peverel earlier this month. Criticising the decision in the House of Commons during questions to Housing, Communities and Local Government Ministers (22.07.19), Priti expressed concerns about villages and communities being adversely affected when housing supply across a district is lower than it should be (full text of her question and the Minister’s response is below).

Commenting after the question session, Priti said: “The community in Hatfield Peverel has been punished by an ill-thought through decision. This level of new housing is unsustainable and the Secretary of State must reflect on the mistake he made when granting planning permission. The decision was taken based on a flawed analysis of the supply of housing across the wider Braintree District and did not recognise the effort the local community put into developing a Neighbourhood Plan for the village containing sites preferable for development and those favourable for protection. I have raised my concerns with the decision in writing too as the Secretary of State needs to know of the strength of local feeling and opposition to his decision.”

Notes for editors:

Priti’s question and the answer received:

Local Authorities: Adopted Local Plans – Hansard 22.07.19

Priti Patel (Witham) (Con)

When district councils do not have a local plan and a five-year land supply in place, it is villages and parishes that face the consequences of planning development. What protections will the Minister and his Department put in place for communities trying to establish neighbourhood plans, and will he reflect on his Department’s recent decision to grant planning permission to two sites in Hatfield Peverel that go against the neighbourhood plan?

Kit Malthouse (Minister for Housing)

My right hon. Friend, with her usual skill, puts up a stout defence on behalf of her constituents. She is quite right that protections that would otherwise exist for neighbourhood plans recede where a local plan is not in place, particularly when there is not a five-year land supply. I would point out that having a five-year land supply is not a necessary condition of having a local plan. It is possible to have one without the other, and I hope that her local authority will seek to do so. We will shortly be issuing planning guidance on plan making, wherein I hope we will include measures to strengthen neighbourhood plans, either in the absence of a local plan or where they are not co-terminus.

Priti’s previous press release and background on the Hatfield Peverel planning decisions can be found online:


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