The Royal Town Planning
Institute, informed by its Historic Environment Group, welcomed the
Government's recently published response to the consultation on
Listed Building Consents, particularly the decision not to pursue
through legislation the notion that an applicant's Accredited
Agents might replace local authority officer recommendations, if
applicants wish (option four of the consultation).
Colin Haylock, President of the RTPI said: "We welcome DCMS
response to the consultation in respect of accredited agents
replacing local authority officer recommendations. The RTPI
stressed the need for LPAs to continue to give appropriate weight
to the local authorities' conservation expertise. Overwhelmingly,
others did too."
In its response to consultation the RTPI said: "it cannot be
reasonable for there to be any expectation that this should fetter
the obligation of the LPA to consider and weigh the public interest
in every case and this may quite rightly include the use of experts
other than those promoted by the applicants. Members of the
community elect their local councillors to perform this 'public
interest' test and would not expect that any expert described as
independent should be tested any less rigorously."