Development in the green belt
Produced in partnership with Stephen Morgan of Landmark Chambers
Development in the green belt

The following Property guidance note Produced in partnership with Stephen Morgan of Landmark Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Development in the green belt
  • Assessment of proposed development's harm
  • Exceptions to restrictions on development in the green belt
  • Additions to existing dwellings
  • Replacing existing buildings
  • Infill development/redevelopment of previously developed sites
  • Renewable energy
  • Housing
  • Recreation
  • Wales

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) sets out strong protections of the green belt. It notes that the government attaches great importance to green belts and clarifies that the fundamental aim of green belt policy is to prevent urban sprawl by keeping land designated as green belt permanently open. There is therefore a strong presumption against inappropriate development in the green belt, with substantial weight to be given to any harm to the green belt in determining planning applications. The policy and tests to apply to development in the green belt are contained in paragraphs 143–147 of the NPPF.

The original version of the NPPF was adopted in 2012 (the 2012 NPPF). It was archived and replaced with effect from 24 July 2018 when a significantly revised version of the NPPF was published. In February 2019, the government published a further revised version of the NPPF. Although the February 2019 version of the NPPF replaces the version adopted in July 2018, it makes no changes to the green belt policy. However, it is worth noting that while green belt protections in the 2012 NPPF were more or less retained in the version of the NPPF published in 2018, there were some shifts in policy between the 2012 and 2018 version (which have been retained in the current 2019 version), as discussed in