Blog and Bulletins Archive

Aurora planning posts

Varshini's world tour(ism)

Varshini's world tour(ism)

Having co-produced last month’s Spotlights, our intern Varshini has now provided the inspiration and research for this month’s blog, drawing on her experience of having travelled widely to bring an international perspective to the planning issues that can result from over tourism and how these might be addressed…

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No man is an island

No man is an island

We have long recognised that the planning system doesn’t exist in isolation and that, as planners, we can only achieve so much on our own in managing the development and use of land. And, this week, news of the decision to allow an area of croft land to be resumed and used for Space Hub Sutherland provides a particularly high-profile example of the relationship between planning and another statutory regime…

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Fair's fair

Fair's fair

As highlighted in our July Spotlights, last month saw the Court of Session quash amendments to Scottish Planning Policy (SPP) made in December 2020 on the basis that the consultation process that preceded these was considered to be so unfair as to be unlawful - but what what was it that caused the Court of Session to conclude that this was unlawful, and what can we learn from this?

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Happy campers

Happy campers

In last month’s blog we looked at some of the planning challenges arising from the increasing demand for short term let holiday accommodation, but there are of course other ways to enjoy your holiday in the UK this summer, including camping and motorhoming.

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We're all goin' on a summer holiday

We're all goin' on a summer holiday

With the summer months now well and truly upon us, and foreign travel still subject to restrictions and uncertainties, it seems that record numbers of people in the UK are looking to spend their holidays on our own shores. The level of interest in second homes and rental properties in popular holiday spots does though raise some particular planning challenges…

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Democracy is not a spectator sport

Democracy is not a spectator sport

The filmmaker Micheal Moore has been quoted as saying  that “Democracy is not a spectator sport,  it’s a participatory event. If we don’t participate in it, it ceases to be a democracy.”   Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, democracy at all levels has been put to the test, and the planning process has not been immune from the democratic challenges posed by this…

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The ghosts of planning - past, present and future

The ghosts of planning - past, present and future

While we would definitely not characterise the planning system as a Scrooge, recent proposals for reform have been underpinned by a belief that the system is failing to deliver the development that it should, and is somewhat miserly in that regard. So, getting into the festive spirit with Dickens’ three Christmas ghosts, here are some reflections on planning past, present and future…

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Sowing the seeds

Sowing the seeds

Recently, there has been a surge of interest in opportunities for people to grow their own food and, with that, demand for structures such as sheds, greenhouses and polytunnels to support this. The question that then arises is whether planning permission is required for any of this, and what might be done in planning terms to encourage more food growing?  

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Rising from the ashes

Rising from the ashes

With many (but not all) city centre businesses now reopening, we got some insight into the issues facing Business Improvement Districts and how these might be addressed when we caught up with Aberdeen Inspired’s Adrian Watson… And the good news is that, with a combination of partnership working, innovative thinking, and culture change, there seems to be a positive future for BIDs and our city centres. 

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A tale of two cities

A tale of two cities

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness…” The current Covid-19 crisis may not be the best of times for anyone but, like that being described by Dickens in his tale of two cities, it is undeniably a time of controversy and contradiction.So how might our cities - the current, and the post Covid-19 - compare?

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