As of Monday 29 June 2020, a Business and Planning Bill published by Government completed all legislative stages in the house of commons.  This coincides with new guidance published on Construction working hours.

The Bill is intended to address the Coronavirus pandemic and support the UK economic recovery by;

  • Making temporary changes to the planning system which will allow fast tracking of applications
  • Extending planning permission deadlines
  • Modified construction working hours
  • Modified legislation dealing with planning appeals
  • Online inspection of documents
  • Compulsory Purchase Orders (CPOs)
  • Development Consent Orders (DCOs)
  • Local Development Documents
  • Spatial Development Strategies

The Housing Minister, Christopher Pincher, issued a Written Ministerial Statement (WMS) for the government to consider amendments to secondary legislation which will enable more consultations and publicity for planning appeals to take place online.

Sites that previously had an expiry date between the start of lockdown to the end of the year will now have the opportunity to extend their consent to 1 April 2021.

Planning appeals are also going to be sped up with the aid of the Planning Inspectorate being able to choose more than one type of procedure to deal with an appeal.

The new fast track application process for the modification of construction site working hours will ¨enable the facilitation of safe construction working practices in line with social distancing guidance issued by the government and Public Health England in response to Covid-19,” stated the government.

Applicants who wish to extend their constriction site working hours will need to implement changes to working practices, such as staggered start and finish times, that may require different hours of operation than those that are currently permitted.

Find out more information on the Government´s Guidance on construction Site working hours.