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What is the role of the National Planning Policy Framework?

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) sets out the Government's economic, environmental and social planning policies for England. The policies set out in this framework apply to the preparation of local and neighbourhood plans and to decisions on planning applications. The NPPF covers a wide range of topics including: housing, business, economic development, transport and the natural environment.

The NPPF introduced the presumption in favour of sustainable development which means that development which is sustainable should be approved without delay. There are three pillars of sustainability (social, economic and environmental) and the Framework contains a number of sections which, taken as a whole, constitute the Government’s view of what sustainable development means in practice.

The Planning Policy Guidance (PPG) adds further context to the NPPF and it is intended that the two documents should be read together.  The PPG is web based with separate sections and is regularly updated when guidance is updated or amended.  It includes a number of key topics such as what should be included in Local Plans, design, neighbourhood planning and the Duty to Cooperate.

The National Planning Policy Framework and the Planning Policy Guidance together with other statements of policy constitute Government Policy and guidance.

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