HC Deb 02 March 1987 vol 111 cc508-9W
Mr. Evans

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many applications for development of agricultural land were referred to his Department in 1984, 1985 and 1986, respectively.

Mr. Waldegrave

I take it that the hon. Gentleman is seeking information on the reference of applications to my right hon. Friend for decision under section 35 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971. (Local planning authorities are required to consult the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food about certain applications before they reach their own decisions on them).

The information is not readily available in the form requested. However, in evidence presented during the Environment Committee's inquiry into "Planning: Appeals, Call-in and Major Public Inquiries" in 1985–86, we reported that, in 1984, of some 427,000 planning applications made, 42 were referred to my right hon. Friend under section 35. Of these only three were subject to specific objection on agricultural grounds.

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