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Last edited 30 Oct 2020
Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act
The Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act received Royal Assent on 13 May 2004.
It enacted polices originally set out in:
- Sustainable Communities – Delivering through Planning, July 2002.
- Planning: Delivering a Fundamental Change, December 2001.
- Compulsory Purchase and Compensation: delivering a fundamental change, December 2001.
- Compulsory Purchase Powers, Procedures and Compensation: the way forward, July 2002.
It is as an important part of the government’s planning policy reforms intended to speed up the planning process and help ensure that planning applications are dealt with more efficiently. It makes provisions relating to spatial development, planning and compulsory purchase and establishes sustainable development as a key objective of the planning system.
Changes that the act introduced include:
- Reforming the handling of planning applications to make the process quicker and more efficient and increasing the predictability of planning decisions.
- Speeding up of the handling of major infrastructure projects.
- Reforming and speeding up of the plans system.
- Abolishing county structure plans and introducing Regional Spatial Strategies (RSS).
- Giving the Secretary of State the power to recognise a body as a regional planning body (RPB).
- Replacing local plans, unitary development plans and structure plans with local development documents.
- Imposing on those with plan-making functions an objective of contributing to the achievement of sustainable development.
- Permitting local planning authorities to introduce local permitted development rights by way of local development orders.
- Requiring that simplified planning zones are identified in the strategic plan for a region.
- Making the planning acts bind the Crown, ending the Crown's immunity.
- Liberalising the compulsory purchase and compensation regimes.
The act is made up of nine parts:
- Part 1 – Regional Functions.
- Part 2 – Local Development.
- Part 3 – Development.
- Part 4 – Development Control.
- Part 5 – Correction of Errors.
- Part 6 – Wales.
- Part 7 – Crown Application of Planning Acts.
- Part 8 – Compulsory Purchase.
- Part 9 – Miscellaneous and General.
Parts 1 and 2 apply only to England. Part 6 focuses solely on Wales and the second half of part 7 relates to Scotland.
For more detailed information, the notes to the legislation.
 Find out more
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Compulsory purchase.
- Local development order.
- National Planning Policy Framework.
- National Planning Practice Guidance.
- Nationally significant infrastructure projects.
- Northern Ireland planning policy.
- Permitted development.
- Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act.
- Planning (Wales) Bill.
- Planning authority.
- Planning legislation.
- Planning permission.
- Property blight.
- Safeguarded land.
- Scottish planning policy.
- Town and Country Planning Act.
- Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (Amendment) (England) Order.
- Welsh planning policy.
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