DCLG has recently invited authorities to bid for ‘pilot’ status. Funding is being made available for authorities to better support neighbourhood planning by piloting ways of making it an integral part of their planning service. It is anticipated authorities will re-design their services and prepare toolkits and resources for others to learn from.
But although many communities across London are engaged in neighbourhood planning, progress has been relatively slow compared to other parts of the country, with only three plans having been ‘made’. So why is that the case? Is it because of a lack of knowledge, support or complexity? Will the DCLG ‘pilot programme’ help? Most surveys to date have focused on community groups, and the findings suggest they are clamouring for more support. We asked local authorities what they thought, and what the implications of the duty to support are for them.
The findings, including a call for some form of pan-London advice, are set out here.