The Welsh planning system is the key to economic recovery

We launch our planning paper and call for the system to be more efficient, effective and transparent
The future of so many rural communities is to give them a purpose - and connectivity makes it all possible

“The Welsh planning system should be a beacon for our post Covid 19 economic recovery,” said Nigel Hollett Director, CLA Cymru, the organisation representing over 35,000 farming and land-based businesses in Wales and England. At the launch of the CLA’s paper Rural Powerhouse: a planning system designed for the rural economy in Wales, Nigel said “Huge potential for growth exists as farmers, landowners and businesspeople are looking to diversify, grow or create additional businesses. This will create secure, long-term jobs and attract the future visitors’ pound.”

“We need our Welsh Government controlled planning system to be a catalyst and enabler – and less an obstruction and blockage for sound projects. Securing investment and assurance that good projects in good locations can go-ahead, is the first step to growth. The planning process should be simpler, more efficient, more transparent and less costly.”

Nigel continues. “We are currently urging the Welsh Government to double the length of Permitted Development Rights from 28 to 56 days. Local authorities should look to applications here to take best advantage of seasonal opportunities and regenerate the economy in their area.”

“We acknowledge the role development can play in meeting social objectives and the imperative to tackle climate change. At the same time the fundamental need to build and nurture a prosperous economy is essential. The pandemic has both created and accelerated existing trends in social change. These must be adopted in new approaches to community development – and new ideas and technology are easily embraced by those looking to develop.

Speaking at the event, Adrian Lort-Phillips from the Lawrenny Estate said, “Land-based rural businesses have an exciting opportunity to play a major part in the economy. The future of so many rural communities is tied to giving them a purpose. Today’s connectivity technology makes all this possible.”

You can download CLA Cymru’s planning paper here.