§ Mr. Speller
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will seek to implement that part of the Ratcliffe report which recommends a time limit for decisions on any planning application.
§ Mr. Tracey
I am not aware of the report to which my hon. Friend refers. Under section 37 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971, article 7 of the Town and Country Planning General Development Order 1977 already prescribes such a limit in that where the authority does not give notice of its decision to the applicant within eight weeks from the date when the application was received, or within any extended period agreed between the applicant and the authority, the applicant may appeal to the Secretary of State for a decision.