Are timescales really important to your development? Do you want greater certainty of key dates for your scheme? Do you want priority access to your Planning Officer? Do you want to improve the quality of your scheme through collaboration with us? If so, a Planning Performance Agreement may be for you, irrespective of the size of your project.

B&NES Development Management Team have been offering the Planning Performance Agreement (PPA) service for 5 years and feedback from developers has been overwhelmingly positive.

What is a PPA?

A PPA is a negotiated agreement signed separately for each stage of a project (pre-application, application, post-decision) which can be set up at any point and on any type of scheme. PPA fees are in addition to existing application fees and pre-application fees and reflect the additional work the council has to undertake to meet the PPA commitments.  

In return you receive an enhanced service, a dedicated Planning Officer to deal with your application, named internal consultees, such as Highways, Ecology or Urban Design, and a mutually agreed timetable for your proposal to be brought forward.

There is no guarantee of a positive outcome on an application covered by a PPA, however a positive outcome is more likely as we will work with you to resolve as many issues as possible thereby reducing the risk of a refusal.

How much does it cost? 

In response to comments from Developers and Agents we now provide a fixed price PPA service which has been designed to offer a clearly laid out fee structure. Payment is in advance, preferably by debit card or credit card, over the telephone on 01225 394041.

Costs for PPA’s are graded according to the scale or complexity of the proposals and what stage you are at. You can use a PPA at each stage of development (pre-application, application and post-decision) and you can start a PPA at any stage.  There will be a separate charge at each stage.

We are aware, however that there will be schemes that do not fit easily into the service levels provided, are very large or complex or simply require a different approach with more external resourcing. For these schemes we offer a bespoke charging facility which we will negotiate with you.

PPA Charging Schedule (Pdf)

What is included in the price?

  • A lead Planning Officer to co-ordinate all the relevant B&NES departments involved such as Ecology, Highways or Drainage, who will be working on your application(s).
  • Meetings, as appropriate, with your Planning Officer and other relevant B&NES officers. 
  • A realistic timetable relevant for the size and complexity of the project and defining key milestones including Section 106 negotiations. 
  • A project plan, identifying key team members, stakeholders & consultees, timetables for meetings and workshops giving you more certainty on the time it will take to determine the application.
  • An agreed understanding of your project’s needs, including management and resources, and the scope of collaborative working. 
  • Advice on who to consult within the local community and how this should be carried out, enabling you to fulfil your obligations under the Council’s Statement of Community Involvement.
  • Early identification of problems or unforeseen issues and a method for reviewing these which should reduce delays to the scheme. 
  • Help to reduce the number of conditions attached to the decision thus potentially facilitating a quicker start to the development with less complication.
  • Advice to minimise the risks and costs associated with appeals.

What is not included?

We are not able to include statutory consultees external to the council such as the Environment Agency, Historic England, Wessex Water, Natural England in a B&NES PPA. These organisations offer their own enhanced services and we recommend you contact them direct if you or we think it would be appropriate and / or beneficial to your scheme.

PPAs are not published on our website, however they will be released if requested under the Freedom of Information Act.

B&NES reserve the right to decline to enter into a Planning Performance Agreement.

How do I set up a PPA?

If you already have an allocated Planning Officer for your scheme, contact them to discuss how a PPA could help you. If not, please call 01225 394041, and we will contact you to discuss the appropriateness of a PPA for you.

Setting up a PPA can be done reasonably quickly.  We will work with you to create a good programme which identifies key milestones & pinch-points with a clearly laid out timetable and target decision date. The lead Planning Officer will regularly review progress of the key issues and tasks with you. We will take shared responsibility for addressing any delays or blockages with you. 

For large or complex projects it may be necessary to undertake a critical path analysis and prioritise the tasks. However, many tasks can be undertaken in parallel to speed up delivery. And it may also be necessary to build in a number of project review stages and meetings attached to the key milestones of the agreed planning process.

Once the agreement has been signed by both the developer and the Council and full payment has been received, the PPA can start.  

The downloadable PPA form can be found in the Documents section to the right.

Last updated: 3 January 2019

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