Communities and Local Government Committee: Press Notice

Session 2008-09, 24 April 2009

New Inquiry

New inquiry: Proposed changes to Planning Policy Statement 6 (Town centres)

The Communities and Local Government Committee is undertaking a brief inquiry into the Government's proposed changes to Planning Policy Statement (PPS) 6 (Town centres). The Committee will be focussing on the proposed change from the "need" test, by which local planning authorities are currently required to assess proposals for out-of-town retail development, to a new "impact assessment framework".

This change, alongside others, was proposed in a Government consultation paper of last year (available on the Department for Communities and Local Government's website here, together with a summary of consultation responses). The Committee has requested, and received, sight of all the responses by interested parties to the consultation paper and is not, therefore, seeking written submissions.

The Government is expected shortly to publish for consultation a single new PPS on "planning for prosperity", which will replace PPS6 and a number of other planning policy statements. The Committee will be taking account of this new document in its consideration of the issues raised by the proposed replacement of the "need" test.

Evidence will be heard at two oral evidence sessions, to be held on 11 and 18 May. Details of the witnesses to be heard at these sessions will be announced shortly.


Committee Membership is as follows: Dr Phyllis Starkey MP (Chair, Lab), Sir Paul Beresford MP (Con), Mr Clive Betts MP (Lab), John Cummings MP (Lab), Andrew George (Lib Dem), Mr Greg Hands MP (Con), Anne Main MP (Con), Dr John Pugh MP (Lib Dem), Emily Thornberry MP (Lab), Neil Turner MP (Lab), David Wright MP (Lab).

Specific Committee Information: [email protected] 020 7219 4972

Media Information: Laura Kibby, 020 7219 0718

Committee Website:

Watch committees and parliamentary debates online:

Publications / Reports / Reference Material: Copies of all select committee reports are available from the Parliamentary Bookshop (12 Bridge St, Westminster, 020 7219 3890) or the Stationery Office (0845 7023474). Committee reports, press releases, evidence transcripts, Bills; research papers, a directory of MPs, plus Hansard (from 8am daily) and much more, can be found on