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Comparison of success rates for planning appeals in North West England

There is significant variability across the local planning authorities in the North West in their performance in defending planning appeals.  Appealfinder's comparison tables for the past 3 years of PINS statistics are below, revealing some uncomfortable truths about the likelihood of success for s78 planning appeals for appellants and local planning authorities alike.

LPAs with the highest and lowest planning appeal success rates

The LPAs n the North West wwith the best records for successfully defending their s78 appeals in 2020/21 wiere Ribble Valley, Fylde and Tameside, all with only 8% of their appeals overturned/ allowed by the Planning Inspectorate. (This assessment excludes LPAs with 3 or less appeals in the year.)

Liverpool has seen its appeal rates worsen to 43% in 2021, up from 23% the previous year. Warrington has also worsening performance over the past 3 years, with appeal rates rising from 19% in 2019 to 42% in 2021. Meanwhile Manchester has seen its appeal success relatively steady at 25% compared to 23% last year.

At the bottom of the league table this year were Bury, Knowsley, South Lakeland and South Ribble with 50% or more of their appeals allowed. Bury has seen its appeal rate rocket from 25% in the 2018/19 to 43% in 2019/20 before reaching 60% in 2020/21,

s78 planning appeals in the North West 2020/21 2019/20 2018/19
number decided % allowed number decided % allowed number decided % allowed
Allerdale 8 25% 16 19% 7 43%
Barrow-in-Furness 2 0% 6 33% 1 0%
Blackburn with Darwen 5 20% 3 0% 6 33%
Blackpool 7 14% 8 50% 5 20%
Bolton 19 42% 23 26% 26 35%
Burnley 7 43% 5 0% 6 33%
Bury 5 60% 7 43% 4 25%
Carlisle 5 20% 10 70% 7 43%
Cheshire East 70 27% 82 24% 80 33%
Cheshire West & Chester 58 28% 72 26% 53 28%
Chorley 5 20% 12 25% 12 42%
Copeland 6 17% 7 29% 1 0%
Cumbria county council 0 - 0 - 0 -
Eden 11 18% 13 8% 9 33%
Fylde 12 8% 15 40% 16 31%
Halton 6 17% 7 0% 3 33%
Hyndburn 1 0% 7 14% 3 33%
Knowsley 2 50% 4 25% 3 67%
Lake District National Park 20 20% 17 24% 12 33%
Lancashire county council 0 - 0 - 1 0%
Lancaster 23 26% 23 9% 18 22%
Liverpool 40 43% 87 23% 33 36%
Manchester 24 25% 94 23% 61 61%
Oldham 12 42% 13 15% 27 41%
Pendle 14 36% 12 33% 12 8%
Preston 19 11% 11 9% 7 43%
Ribble Valley 13 8% 17 18% 17 29%
Rochdale 16 19% 16 19% 11 18%
Rossendale 21 29% 22 23% 20 10%
Salford 8 25% 10 80% 13 38%
Sefton 29 38% 19 42% 21 38%
South Lakeland 8 50% 8 25% 12 25%
South Ribble 7 57% 9 33% 16 38%
St. Helens 3 0% 6 50% 0 -
Stockport 19 32% 20 40% 19 37%
Tameside 12 8% 16 19% 11 9%
Trafford 14 36% 19 32% 11 36%
Warrington 19 42% 19 26% 31 19%
West Lancashire 22 41% 25 40% 20 25%
Wigan 11 18% 8 25% 4 25%
Wirral 30 33% 29 31% 19 53%
Wyre 13 15% 21 14% 13 38%

Change in planning appeal success rates over time

Some LPAs have improving performance, others worsening performance over time. This can reflect one or more of the following factors:
    • progress of a Local Plan
    • change in five year housing land supply position
    • LPAs granting permission more readily after experiencing a previous swathe of appeals (behaviour adjustment)
    • change in officers and/or councillors
    • statistical variance, particularly there are only a small number of appeals

To find appeals that are relevant to you, use the search on our Home page.

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