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Planning myths

Myth busting: the truth about planning

Planning helps to shape the places where people live and work but all too often it is unfairly characterised as a barrier to growth and an obstacle to progress. 

The RTPI aims to dispel these and other myths about planning. We are keen to set the record straight, bust the myths that have grown up around planning, and emphasise the true value of proper planning.

To kick start the campaign, we have issued a news release and a myth-busting paper detailing some of the myths that have grown up around planning and present the evidence to refute them.

Top five planning myths:

1. The default response to a planning application is no

2. Planning is slow

3. Planning is costly

4. Planning is a drag on economic growth

5. Planning forces house prices up

For more information about the myths, download our myth-busting paper.

How RTPI members can get involved:

  • Write to your local councillors and MP about the myths. If you work closely with 'planning councillors' send them a copy of the full briefing.
  • Write to your local paper about the commonly held myths, referencing the Myths Campaign.
  • Sending us evidence that proves - or disproves - our position.
  • Using the evidence in our discussion paper, write to the editor to correct the position when you see planning falsely portrayed in the your local paper.
  • Submitting examples of good planning to the regional and national planning awards.
  • Let us know if there are any myths we have missed by emailing

For more information about planning:

Planning Aid England provides free, independent and professional planning advice to communities and individuals who cannot afford to pay professional fees.

The Planning Advisory Service helps councillors and local authority officers understand and respond to planning reform.

The Department for Communities and Local Government's planning section is an invaluable source of information. They regularly compile statistics on the performance of planning authorities.

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RTPI Networks generate, demonstrate and disseminate knowledge and good practice.

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