PLANNING

Councils spend £45m on planning appeal advice

Councils spent £45m over the past three years on external legal advice relating to planning appeals, according to Freedom of Information Act requests.

Councils spent £45m over the past three years on external legal advice relating to planning appeals, according to Freedom of Information (FOI) Act requests.

Each local authority spent an average of £45,000 per year on legal advice between 2020-21 and 2022-23.

The Home Builders Federation, which sent the FOI requests, calculated this amounted to a national spend of £15m a year on external advice.

Over the three-year period surveyed, the top 10 councils alone spent £5m, with Medway Council spending the most with a total of £680,000.

The Planning Inspectorate, an executive agency of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, spent £5m on external legal advice relating to planning appeals during the same period.

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