May 8th, 2024 by James Goudie KC

Section 38 ( 6 ) of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 requires that if regard is to be had to the Development Plan for the purposes of any determination to be made under the Planning Acts the determination must be made in accordance with the Plan, unless MATERIAL CONSIDERATIONS , including national policy as expressed in the NPPF, indicate otherwise. In MID-SUFFOLK DC v SoS ( 2024 ) EWHC 930 ( Admin ) the Judge observes, at paras 122-138 inc, that there is however no prescribed format as to the way in which the reasoning on the considerations should be set out. The question is whether Section 38 ( 6 ) has been applied as a matter of substance. Mere failure to mention factors does not mean that there was a failure to take them into account in making the decision, provided that it is apparent that the decision-maker was well aware of each of these factors and was taking them into account.

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