English Nature actively worked to ensure that the planning system at every level included policies which promote English Nature’s objectives. The regional level of planning guidance has been identified as being of substantial importance. This report aimed to explore how policies in Regional Planning Guidance (RPG) relevant to biodiversity and geological features had been taken forward into development plans. It also aimed to identify any barriers to the flow of policy from RPG to development plans, including situations where sources of guidance other than RPG and PPG9 were helping to shape the content of the development plans. The study had three key requirements:
- to examine where the regional planning process had got to in terms of preparation of the current round of RPG, and to consider the changes that were anticipated as a result of the Planning and Compensation Bill;
- to describe the existing policy content of RPG, and to consider how emerging development plan content reflected the content of the relevant RPG;
- to consider any barriers to effective transfer which were preventing the cascade approach from taking effect or are circumventing it.
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