Friday, 4 November 2016

Further amendments to the GPDO


My publishers and I had a momentary panic when, just after the first print run of the Second Edition of A Practical Guide to Permitted Changes of Use had been delivered from the printers, we learnt of the General Permitted Development (England) (Amendment) (No.2) Order 2016 [SI 2016 No. 1040], which was made on 31 October, laid before parliament on 3 November and comes into force on today (4 November).

But as the late Frankie Howard would have said, “Panic ye not.” This amendment order relates purely to Part 16 of the Second Schedule, which deals with developments by telecoms code operators. I have made a passing reference to Part 16 in the book, in the context of the 56-day rule, but the revised provisions do not alter anything in that regard.

There is, however, something on the horizon which could potentially make a third edition of the book necessary in due course. This is the possible revival of the proposal to allow the demolition and replacement of office buildings under Class O. As I have observed at the end of Chapter 7, in the event that these proposals are revived at any time in the future, they would most probably be foreshadowed by a further ministerial statement setting out ministers’ intentions in the matter at that time, and I would also expect a consultation exercise regarding the additional matters that would require prior approval in respect of proposals for demolition and reconstruction of office buildings. I do not in fact take a mere footnote in an obscure press release, which happened to mention the demolition of offices, as indicating a serious intention on the part of ministers to pursue this at present. (But we shall see.)

© MARTIN H GOODALL

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