This week has seen the launch of Dorset Council - the new unitary authority replacing the old Dorset County, East Dorset, North Dorset, Purbeck, West Dorset and Weymouth Councils into one smooth and streamlined whole (we hope).
There will no doubt be teething troubles - their website has certainly been difficult to navigate with missing pages and content - but there has obviously been much going on behind the scenes in preparation. The new planning application validation checklist is now online, plus a handy tick list by application type, which means that the local list of requirements (which for many had been out of date) now has some teeth - at least for the next two years.
There is no notice of validation timescales - before the changeover this was running at 5 weeks for some of the councils. Let's hope this doesn't have to get worse before it gets better! Looking forward to see how the first planning committees operate at the end of May.
I wonder what they would have made of the 'Headington Shark' - Bill Heine its protagonist RIP 3/4/19. As the Planning Inspector put it back in 1992, when he considered Oxford City Council's pleas to refuse consent for its retention, "any system of control must make some small place for the dynamic, the unexpected, the downright quirky. I therefore recommend that the Headington shark be allowed to remain"