I never got into the "The Planners" (BBC 2's "observational documentary" about life in town and country planning). Not sure why until this week - but now I realise - they should have made a drama series instead. After the vague feeling of being a bit one removed from the headlines around the cabinet reshuffle, this week has restored my faith in the ability of planning to make you ask "really?"
I blogged the other day about the first "special measures" application being turned down (and of course there is no appeal - just a judicial challenge if there is any scope for that in the decision itself). Today we read news of the Winslow Neighbourhood Plan attracting a huge "yes" vote in yesterday's referendum. This is a story to keep us all watching the new bulletins because a developer is challenging the plan by way of JR. An attempt was made earlier in the week to secure an injunction to stop the referendum - but the judge was having none of it. This is not the first judicial challenge to a Neighbourhood Plan - nor should we expect it to be the last.
Meanwhile, Luton Borough Council is batting on with its legal challenge against the decision, by its neighbouring Council (Central Beds) to grant a 5,000+ dwelling scheme.
And to top it all, and as announced earlier this month, for the next 12 months (at least) appeals for housing schemes in areas where there is a Neighbourhood Plan (in place or submitted) can be recovered to the Secretary of State so that he can consider "the extent to which the Government’s intentions are being achieved on the ground".
You can't deny, its all gripping stuff.