Agenda and draft minutes

Planning Performance Review Sub-Committee
Wednesday, 3 April 2024 6:00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Town Hall, Barking

Contact: John Dawe, Senior Governance Officer 


No. Item


Apologies For Absence


Apologies were submitted by Councillors Spoor and Zamee


Declaration of Interests


Review of Planning Decisions- Performance Report (April 2023 - March 2024) pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Application bundle starts from Page 11 (Appendix A to the covering report)


Appeal bundle starts from page 187 (Appendix B to the covering report)

Additional documents:


The purpose of the meeting was to consider and report back annually to the Planning Committee on a random sample of ten delegated planning decisions and ten appeal decisions, both sets of which were previously selected by the Chair, taken from the total number of those decisions/appeals determined between April 2023 and March 2024, as detailed in the appendices to the covering report.


Barry Coughlan, Interim Head of Development Management (IHDM) presented a report providing an overview of all decisions taken during the period which showed that when considered against the latest available DLUHC performance data produced for all 330 local authorities in England, LBBD were placed joint first (1st) both nationally and in London for determining major development decisions (100%). For the record Barking and Dagenham has maintained top ranking for 15 consecutive months. Furthermore, the Authority was placed first (1st) nationally and in London for determining non-major development decisions (92.97%) within the statutory eight-week statutory period.


These statistics indicated a continuing performance improvement linked to Be First’s aspirations to accelerate development, aligning more widely to the government’s aspiration to ‘speed up’ the planning process.


The report included a breakdown within the date period of approvals/refusals across various application types and included commentary about householder applications, where approvals during the period achieved 65% against a challenging and aspirational target of 67% given the quality of submissions at receipt were very poor and propose extremely unneighbourly development. Whilst this was marginally below target and what was achieved in the previous 12 months, the quality of decision making had remained high, and the timely determinations represented a nationally best position.


Finally in respect of certificates of lawful development and prior notifications, the performance levels of determination ‘within time’ were 100% respectively


Appendix 1 and 2 contained the bundle of the randomly selected delegated planning and appeal decisions which included an overview title page, key drawings, together with the officer delegated report and decision notice. At the meeting a single delegated planning and appeal decision was selected by the Members, to which the IHDM provided a summary overview of both. A number of comments arose in respect of both cases which the IHDM supported by Marilyn Smith, Head of Planning Assurance responded to.


The Sub-Committee were satisfied that the relevant planning policies and criteria had been applied correctly to both cases.


A full report detailing the Sub Committee’s findings would be presented by the IHDM for comment and noting at the Planning Committee on 22 April 2024.


In conclusion the Chair and Members placed on record thanks to Barry Coughlan and his staff in the Be First Management team together with Marilyn Smith, and support from officers in Law and Governance, who collectively had worked hard to achieve such outstanding performance outcomes over the past year.