Policy & Lobbying
Planning Policy

 The overall aim of the Scottish Planning System is delivery of a planning service that is efficient, inclusive, fit for purpose and sustainable.

There are three main parts to the planning system:

  • Development Plans
    which set out how places should change and also set out the policies used to make decisions about planning applications.
  • Development Management
    the process for making decisions about planning applications.
  • Enforcement
    the process that makes sure that development is carried out correctly and takes action when development happens without permission or when conditions have not been followed.

Each council area in Scotland is covered by a local development plan, which sets out where most new developments are proposed and the policies that will guide decision-making on planning applications.

If you live in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow or any of the following council areas - Aberdeenshire, Angus, East Dunbartonshire, East Lothian, East Renfrewshire, Fife, Inverclyde, Midlothian, North Lanarkshire, Perth and Kinross, Renfrewshire, Scottish Borders, South Lanarkshire, West Dunbartonshire or West Lothian - there will also be a strategic development plan covering all or part of your area. The strategic development plan sets out the long-term development of the city region and deals with region-wide issues such as housing and transport.

Councils can also prepare supplementary guidance. A wealth of information on the planning system is available on the Scottish Government website. 

After significant representation by Scottish Land & Estates, local authorities across Scotland are adopting the positive messages set out with the consolidated Scottish Planning Policy. Supportive planning policy is critical to rural development whether for housing or business and diversification.

Scottish Land & Estates can provide advice and support to members on planning policy issues but is unable to advise on individual planning applications.

Scottish Land & Estates Responds to Amendments to the Modernised Planning System

Scottish Land & Estates recently responded to the Scottish Government's consultation entitled Amendments to the Modernised Planning System. Scottish Land & Estates is supportive of the majority of the proposals contained within the consultation, although has advised that the proposed amendments will not address the issues being experienced  in relation to neighbour notification and bare land.
Letter from Chief Planner on Affordable Housing  

The Scottish Government's Chief Planner, Jim Mackinnon, has written to all local authorities regarding affordable housing policies and the importance of these reflecting the current economic climate.

    Current Consultation Briefings

    • 26/10/2017 - Briefing Note: Planning Review Latest
      This paper sets out the latest developments on proposals relating to the Scottish Government's planning review
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    • 18/11/2013 - Briefing Note: Aberdeenshire Local Development Plan 2016 – Main Issues Report consultation
      The Main Issues Report (MIR) is an important stage in the Local Development Plan (LDP) process. The Aberdeenshire MIR sets out those factors that have been identified as the key land use planning issues in the area and its preparation involved a number of steps: identifying what the main issues might be; developing the option
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    • 15/11/2013 - H&C 06: The Defective and Dangerous Buildings (Recovery of Expenses) (Scotland) Bill
      The Defective and Dangerous Buildings (Recovery of Expenses) (Scotland) Bill was introduced into Scottish Parliament on 30 October 2013. The purpose of the Bill is to amend the Building (Scotland) Act 2003 (the ‘2003 Act’) to provide for expenses incurred by local authorities in the repair, securing or demolition of defec
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    • 07/03/2013 - Scottish Land and Estates provide MSPs with briefing for Wild Land debate
          The Scottish Parliament debated a motion earlier this week on a proposal to officially designate Wild Land in Scotland.  Scottish Land & Estates provided MSPs with a briefing outlining our position.   MSPs supporting the motion have concerns about newer economic developments such as wind farms in areas

    • 06/02/2013 - Briefing Note: Delivery of Regeneration in Scotland Inquiry – Call for Written Evidence
      In January, the Local Government and Regeneration Committee launched an Inquiry to identify and examine best practice and limitations in relation to the development of regeneration in Scotland. A Briefing Note has now been prepared for members summarising the main sections of the Scottish Government's Regeneration Strategy an
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    • 02/05/2012 - Briefing Note: Planning consultations 2012
      On March 28, 2012 Derek Mackay, the Minister for Local Government and Planning made a statement to the Scottish Parliament setting out the Scottish Government’s proposals for future reform of the planning system. The statement document, ‘Planning Reform: Next Steps’, sets out the Scottish Government direction and specific

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2017 Scottish Rural Business Directory in association with Subaru, Download

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