National Trust responds to Government proposals for planning reforms

Press release
View from an elevated viewpoint of the meadows and Fairhaven Lodges at Runnymede, Surrey
Published : 06 Aug 2020

Ingrid Samuel, Historic Environment Director at the National Trust, said:

“Lockdown has shown us how equality of access to everyday nature, local green space, culture and history is vital for the health and wellbeing of every one of us. It is not clear that the proposed categorisation approach will be adept enough to be able to deliver nature, history and beauty where people need it most.

“Our country has vibrant towns and communities because of a plan-led approach, not in spite of it, yet we continue to face the challenge of chronic under resourcing in local planning authorities, slowing down effective decision making.

“An effective approach to planning is one of the most important tools we have to help us tackle the modern day challenges this country faces; from the climate crisis and environmental emergencies to recovery from Covid19. While we welcome the Government’s ongoing commitment to protect the country’s most special places outlined today, we need to go further and also ensure we care for everyday local heritage and green spaces. Any changes to the planning system need to be carefully considered in the context of how we build back better, not just faster. It is important that we work together to get this right.”