Planning inquiries
Planning inquiries

The following Planning practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Planning inquiries
  • Purpose of inquiries
  • Legislation and guidance
  • Pre-inquiry
  • Notification of intention to submit appeal
  • Appeal submission and response
  • Statement of common ground
  • Statement of case
  • Notification of start date
  • Notification of inquiry date
  • More...

Coronavirus (COVID-19): This Practice Note contains guidance on subjects potentially impacted by the government’s response to the coronavirus outbreak — see: Planning inquiries — Impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) on planning appeals. For further updates on key developments and related practical guidance on the implications for lawyers, see: Coronavirus (COVID-19)—Planning and the Coronavirus (COVID-19) toolkit.

Purpose of inquiries

Planning and listed building consent applications are made to the local planning authority (LPA). Appeals are made to the Planning Inspectorate and may be made for a number of reasons, but most are made because the LPA has refused permission or consent. See Practice Note: Planning appeals—key points.

A planning inquiry allows an inspector, the Secretary of State (SoS) or the Welsh Ministers to decide whether or not planning permission should be granted. An inspector, appointed by the Planning Inspectorate (PINS), hears evidence from:

  1. the developer

  2. the LPA, and

  3. any other interested parties

A local inquiry is more formal procedure than the informal hearing route and is usually used for complex cases where legal issues may need to be considered. The main parties will usually have legal representatives to present their case and to cross-examine any witnesses.

Legislation and guidance

Public inquiries determined by inspectors in England are governed by the Town and Country Planning Appeals (Determination by Inspectors) (Inquiries Procedure) (England) Rules 2000 (the English Inquiry Procedure Rules).

Inquiries determined by the

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