Category Archive: Development

Third Party Right of Appeal Rejected: Planning (Scotland) Bill

The Local Government and Communities Committee has rejected an amendment to the Planning (Scotland) Bill that would have introduced Third Party Right of Appeal.

What is the Planning (Scotland) Bill?

The Planning (Scotland) Bill was introduced on 4th December 2017  and it is intended to strengthen the planning system’s contribution to inclusive growth and empowering communities (click for more information).

Third Party Right of Appeal

What is Third Party Right of Appeal?

First Party – Proposer of the application
Second Party – Local authority
Third Party – Community or individual that is objecting a proposal

Currently, in Scotland, a developer has the right to appeal when planning permission has been refused, however, the objector (Third Party) does not have a right to appeal if planning permission has been granted.

Planning minister, Kevin Stewart stated that the introduction of Third Party Right of Appeal would add confusion to the planning process as well as damaging the planning system by causing additional conflict and blocking development opportunities.

The bill aims to create significant more homes in Scotland, whilst allowing communities to have more of a say about changes to the places they live.

Stephanie Linnell, Associate at George F. White said:

“Whilst it is vital that communities are involved in the development of their area, this should be through the preparation of the Local Development Plan and engagement in specific planning application proposals.

Engagement needs to be strengthened as part of the process of planning applications, rather than as a last resort to appeals which would remove local decision making bodies to a central body.

We will need to wait for the outcome of the Planning (Scotland) Bill at stage three.”

Newcastle DAP: consultation period

Newcastle City Council are currently consulting on their Development and Allocations Plan (‘DAP’), which considers planning policies and site allocations for future development including housing, employment, and commercial sites.


The DAP is the second part of Newcastle’s Local Plan. The Local Plan is a collection of documents that will guide the future development in Newcastle to 2030.

  • Part 1: Core Strategy and Urban Core Plan (CSUCP) – Adopted March 2015
  • Part 2: Development and Allocations Plan (DAP) – Currently being prepared and the DAP is the subject of this consultation
  • The DAP plays an important role in shaping the future of Newcastle. It provides more detailed policies to support and help to deliver the strategic policies set out in the CSUCP, by including:
    • Policies which will be used to make decisions on planning applications;
    • Allocations of housing and employment sites to support the CSUCP;
    • Designations of retail centre boundaries and sites for environmental protection.

If you own land or property in Newcastle, please contact our planning team on ​0191 605 3484 to understand whether your site has been identified for future development or whether there is potential for the site to come forward.

DAP Consultation Letter

Revised National Planning Policy Framework

The revised NPPF (National Planning Policy Framework) (2018) was released yesterday amid a raft of other national legislation before the start of the Parliament recess. The draft was issued in March 2018 and has been subject to consultation, initially it looks like there have been very few changes from this draft. We are just wading our way through it to see what the changes are and what implications these may have for our clients.

There is an increased emphasis on high quality design to be achieved in new developments and through development plan policies including Neighbourhood Plans to reflect local characteristics. The Framework reaffirms protect of Green Belt land provides further protection for biodiversity ancient woodland and trees, and stresses greater importance on air quality.

It confirms a methodology for calculating housing need across different forms and tenures and crucially from November 2018 Council’s will have to meet a Housing Delivery Test. This focuses on driving up the number of homes delivered in areas, as opposed to how many are planned for. Councils that under-deliver against a three year housing target – will be penalised. The Framework also places greater emphasis on small sites recognising the need for a greater variety of site to come forward through the planning system.

It’s important to ensure that we assess and interpret its content much of which is aimed at responding to a national housing crisis and preparing for the impacts economically of a post Brexit environment, and advise our clients accordingly.

The government repeated its goal to building 300,000 new homes a year “by the mid-2020s”.

If you would like to discuss further or have a specific planning query please contact Stephanie Linnell on 01665 511990 or email

Getting to know… Julie Hunter

Julie Hunter joined our Planning & Development team in July 2017. It’s been an exciting start for our newest partner….

Julie Hunter

Congratulations Julie Hunter, and welcome to the George F. White family! How are you settling in?

Thank you. I really feel at home at George F. White. The team is knowledgeable, enthusiastic and extremely ambitious. We have a bright future ahead of us!

What does your role as a partner entail?

I lead the planning team in Durham but my wider role is to work alongside Robyn and the George F. White team, across all regions and sectors, to grow the business and strengthen our offer.

Now that you’re ready to get things going, what are you immediate priorities for the Durham region?

I’d like to engage with clients old and new, offering our full range of services tailored to their individual needs. As a planner, one of the most exciting things is that George F. White has a direct link to potential land supply via our existing client relationships. We are therefore able to offer a complete service to our development clients from site finding through to design, planning and to onward sale. One of my big priorities is to get that message out there!

Work talks aside, let’s hear a little bit more about you. What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

Well… I’m a serial renovator! I like to buy old or unloved properties and refurbish them with the intention of living there, however it is usually the case that when one project is nearing the end I already have my eye on the next! My latest is an ugly 1970’s house with lots of potential and a paddock for my daughters to explore.

Which three people, dead or alive, would you invite to dinner?

Firstly, my Grandad Kenneth, he was a bit of a hero to me. David Attenborough would be a fascinating dinner guest, he has seen some amazing things and I’m sure he has some great stories of his travels. Finally, Frank Gehry, as he is living proof that you can follow your dream later in life and still be hugely successful.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given?

It’s nice to be nice.

For more information about our planning & development services in County Durham and across the North, please contact: Julie Hunter or 07468 860629.