INDUSTRY COMMENT – Opportunities for Paragraph 55 New Country Houses is maintained in revised NPPF but is renamed Paragraph 81

Para 55, para55, paragraph 55, paragraph55, NPPF, Spiral House, Blackdown Hills AONBBy Associate Director, James Ellis

As part of our recent review of the changes within the consultation draft of the revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) we examined with interest the policy on New Country Houses. As we are one of the country’s leading planning advisers on the delivery of New Country Houses, with consents in the Forest of Dean, Chilterns AONB, Blackdown Hills AONB (pictured), Nidderdale AONB and West Oxfordshire, we were keen to see if and how the policy which allows isolated new designs of exceptional or innovative quality was maintained in the new document.

The good news is that the policy is maintained and with only minor changes.

The main change being NPPF Paragraph 55 has now become NPPF Paragraph 81.

NPPF Paragraph 55 states:

  • the exceptional quality or innovative nature of the design of the dwelling.
    Such a design should:
    – be truly outstanding or innovative, helping to raise standards of design more generally in rural areas;
    – reflect the highest standards in architecture;
    – significantly enhance its immediate setting; and
    – be sensitive to the defining characteristics of the local area.

Paragraph 81 in the consultation draft allows a new house where:

  •  the design is of exceptional quality, in that it:
    – is truly outstanding or innovative, reflecting the highest standards in architecture, and would help to raise standards of design more generally in rural areas; and
    – would significantly enhance its immediate setting, and be sensitive to the defining characteristics of the local area.

This reflects only minor changes and should the final revision of the NPPF include the policy as it is in the consultation draft we look forward to continuing to work with landowners and architects to delivering more designs of exceptional quality in the years to come. See our current portfolio of consents.

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