While the planning system is very complex, it’s easy to have your say. If you have the reference number and the name of the case officer working on the application you can simply submit comments by email. Ideally you need to say which planning policies the application breaches, but don’t let that put you off. Just say why you object to, or support, the application and try to get your comments in quickly – within 21 days of the start date.
It’s also important to contact your ward councillors and parish council. Developers usually meet ward councillors and planning committee members long before filing their applications so it’s very important that your elected representatives hear from residents too!
You can read all the documents, drawings, and comments from other people on MK Council’s website on the planning section. Or simply follow Xplain for analysis and updates and if you have a query drop me a line and I’ll try to help.
You can also register to use the portal and submit your comments that way. And if you tick ‘track’, it will email you when something significant happens.
For a night to remember, I recommend going to the public gallery when the Council’s Development Control Committee is judging a controversial plan.
This can be a night of high drama or low farce, where a ‘quasi-judicial’ committee, drawn from all political parties, weighs the evidence and votes.
The applicants for major planning applications usually turn up in force – ready to punch the air and look unbearably smug if they win. Or go to appeal if they lose!