Planning & Heritage
JTS has decades of experience of operating within the planning system in order to achieve the best results for our clients. We have a team of experienced professionals who, having assessed your requirements, will identify the best, and most cost-effective, way to achieve the desired result. We will advise upon whether permission is required; whether the same, or a similar, result can be achieved via the permitted development route; the issues that need to be addressed; and how best to package a proposal.
With Council budgets coming under greater and greater pressure, it is becoming increasingly difficult to engage meaningfully with planning officers, particularly once an application has been submitted. Advice is available through the pre-application process, but a charge is made, time scales are uncertain and the response, whilst highlighting relevant issues, will rarely propose solutions. We believe that the key to a success is good preparation. We want to know as much as we can about your project, so that we can anticipate the planning issues that might arise and make sure that they all fully covered in the application submission. Our aim is to reduce uncertainty and mitigated risk, so as to maximise the chances of a successful outcome
We can best do this if we are instructed at an early stage and have the maximum possible information about a proposal, the site and any relevant policies. We will meet with you to discuss your scheme, provide a full appraisal and advise upon the best way forward.
Pre-Application & Application Submissions
Where time allows, we will undertake pre-application discussions with the local authority so as to try and resolve as many issues as possible before a scheme is submitted for planning.
Even modest proposals now have to be supported by an extensive range of documents (Planning Statement, Design and Access Statement, Need Assessment, Sequential Assessment, Sustainability Statement, Heritage Statement etc), many of which we can prepare in-house. For larger schemes, we act as project manager and advise upon, and co-ordinate, the instruction of other consultants to prepare specialist reports (Flood Risk Assessment, Ecological Studies, Highways Reports etc). Where required, we co-ordinate, with our extensive contacts, Environmental Impact Assessments.
Local planning authorities are increasingly asking applicants to consult the local community before submitting an application for planning permission. If properly targeted, consultation can resolve potential misunderstandings and significantly reduce the number of objections made when an application is submitted. The Partnership has extensive experience in this field.
Community Infrastructure Levy & Section 106 Agreements
Where adopted, most new development, which creates net additional floor space of 100 square metres or more, or which creates a new dwelling, is potentially liable to pay the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL). There are complex rules relating to liability, exemptions, calculation and phasing. Decisions made at an early stage in the development process can significantly influence the amount of charge payable when the scheme is started. JTS can help an applicant / developer minimise its CIL liabilities, particularly if our advice is sought at an early stage.
CIL has not entirely replaced the need for Section 106 Agreements and Unilateral Undertakings, but many local authorities, and particular those that have not yet adopted a CIL Charging Schedule, are still requesting Section 106s (where there is no legal basis to do so). There are complex transitionary rules in place and JTS has challenged many requests, and saved its clients £10,000’s, since they came into force in April 2016.
Planning Appeals & Expert Witness
We specialise in planning appeals, whether pursued through Written Representations, a Hearing or a Public Inquiry. We provide Expert Witness evidence and have Direct Access to the Bar and can appoint barristers to act on your behalf.
Certificates of Lawfulness
We prepare and submit applications for Certificates of Lawful Use and Development and can assist clients in the preparation of Statutory Declarations.
We can advise, and represent, you in respect of any issues you may have relating to Enforcement, Prosecutions or Injunctions. Such issues are becoming more prevalent given the increased enforcement powers given to local authorities within the Localism Act.
We can advise upon the need, and apply, for advertisement consent.
Local and Neighbourhood Plans
The Partnership works nationwide and we are familiar with the existing and emerging policies of many local authorities. We can advise upon how the policy framework affects your proposals, or building / site, and we make representations to try and influence emerging policies and land use allocations. We have appeared at many Local Plan Examinations promoting or clients’ sites and interests.
Conservation and Heritage
JTS Partnership has a wealth of experience in dealing with issues pertaining to listed buildings, and conservation areas, and in liaising with relevant statutory bodies, including Historic England and CADW (the Welsh Assembly Government’s historic environment division). There is an increasing expectation on developers to provide detailed Heritage Assessments, at an early stage of the development process, and to identify the ‘significance’ of a Heritage Asset and the impact of the development on that Asset.
We act on behalf of many clients who own, or operate from, listed buildings and we are experienced in the following areas:
- the need to obtain listed building / scheduled ancient monument / conservation area consent;
- heritage appraisals;
- listed building / scheduled ancient monument applications;
- heritage statements;
- submission of appeals;
- preparation of evidence to support appeals; and
- expert witness evidence.