Pendle Council together with Hyndburn and Rossendale Councils submitted a joint bid to the Government in February 2016 to become a pilot authority for the preparation of a Brownfield Register. This bid was successful and work has been underway over the last few months to compile a list of sites to be considered for inclusion on the draft Register.
What is the pilot Brownfield Register project?
The Government has made a commitment to introduce Brownfield Registers to ensure that 90% of suitable brownfield sites have planning permission for housing by 2020. The pilot project provided an opportunity for us to prepare a draft Register before new regulations requiring the preparation of a register come into force. This has allowed us to provide feedback to the Government on what went well and where there needs to be more guidance.
The purpose of preparing the Brownfield Register is twofold. First is to provide developers with a simple means of identifying developable brownfield sites through a standardise national dataset. Second is to grant Permission in Principle for residential led development on those sites that are included on the Register. The details of how Permission in Principle will work will be provided in the new regulations which are due to be published in September/October 2016.
The Government has provided guidance to pilot authorities on how to prepare the draft Register. The guidance recommends that the Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA) should be used as a starting point for identifying sites. In addition councils were asked to consider other potential evidence sources to help identify further brownfield sites. The initial list of sites was then assessed against a range of criteria to consider their suitability for inclusion on the register. The assessment criteria can be viewed in the Government's Pilot Brownfield Register Manual.
Pendle's pilot Brownfield Register
The pilot Brownfield Register for Pendle can be downloaded below along with plans of each site included on the register:
In the interests of transparency, those sites which were assessed and considered not to be suitable for inclusion on the draft Register are listed in Annex 1:
What's happening next?
The Housing and Planning Act 2016 set out the primary legislation which requires councils to prepare a Brownfield Register. However, the Government is still preparing the regulations which will provide details of how the Register should be prepared. These regulations are due to be published in September/October 2016 and once these are finalised we will update the register to reflect the requirements.