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town and country planning

A system of controlling the use of land administered by local planning authorities under the Town and Country Planning Act 1971, which is subject to supervisory powers of the Secretary of State. These authorities include both county and district councils and also, in Greater London, the London borough councils and the Court of Common Council. The background to control is the development plan. County councils formulate and keep under review structure plans for their areas, and the other authorities maintain local plans for theirs. Structure plans indicate general policy as to land use and local plans detailed policy; the structure plan and local plan relating to an area together constitute its development plan. The machinery of control is planning permission, without which no *development of land may take place. The Secretary of State has granted permission for certain classes of development ('permitted development') by a general development order applicable throughout England and Wales; permission may be granted for particular cases by special development orders. In all other cases permission is a matter for local planning authorities (normally at district or borough level), with a right of appeal to the Secretary of State against its refusal or against conditions attached to it. The implementation of control is by local planning authorities at the same level, primarily by serving an *enforcement notice.

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