Planning Aid England provides free, independent and professional planning advice to communities and individuals who cannot afford to pay fees to a planning consultant. It complements the work of local planning authorities, but is wholly independent of them.
A new Planning Aid service in England was launched on the 13 June 2011. Planning Aid is more than giving advice, it engages communities positively in the planning process to help them manage changes to their neighbourhood areas.
Two main services will be provided:
- A single national Planning Advice Line on 0330 123 9244 where all callers will receive 15 minutes of free, independent and professional advice. In addition, some callers may be eligible for further assistance from a professional volunteer. Other callers will be guided to the website and sign-posted to other organisations.
- A neighbourhood planning service will also be provided to support people and communities in gaining knowledge about the planning system and how they can be involved. A team of community outreach co-ordinators have been recruited to support volunteers to work within target communities to build their own plans for the neighbourhoods in which they live.
Planning Aid England can help people to:
- Understand and take part in the planning system
- Take part in the preparation of plans
- Comment on planning applications
- Apply for planning permission or appeal against refusal of permission (we do not however draw plans)
- Represent themselves at appeals or public inquires
Planning Aid helps to meet one of the key aims of the government's planning reform agenda, which is to place community engagement at the heart of the planning system. Planning Aid is part of the Royal Town Planning Institute. Registered charity number 262865.
Community Outreach Co-ordinator
The Community Outreach Coordinator for the East Midlands and East of England area is Rebecca Elson;
Tel: 07816 406 282.
Rebecca is keen to hear from local authorities, community groups, new/existing volunteers who might be interested in finding out more about how to engage with Planning Aid and the services it offers.