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Legislation

The reform of the planning system requires substantial changes to legislation. This started with the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019, which makes some significant changes to the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997.

We are now taking forward a programme of secondary legislation to enable implementation of the new Act, along with further legislation such as changes to permitted development rights.

We include here links to the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 and all regulations which have either been brought forward as part of its implementation or to form another part of the Transforming Planning in Practice programme.

Planning (Scotland) Act 2019

Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 – the Act was passed by the Scottish Parliament on 20 June 2019, and received Royal Assent on 25 July 2019. Explanatory Notes

We have produced this version of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 showing the amendments made to it by the 2019 Act.

Secondary legislation

The Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Commencement No. 1) Regulations 2019 - Includes bringing into force provisions relating to: the Purpose of Planning; and the National Planning Framework. Policy Note

The Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Commencement No. 2, Saving and Transitional Provisions) Regulations 2019 - Includes bringing into force provisions relating to: notice of major developments to elected members; noise-sensitive developments; and increased maximum fines relating to enforcement action. (Also see Amendment Regulations) Policy Note

The Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Commencement No. 3) Regulations 2019 - Includes bringing into force provisions relating to: appointment of National Planning Improvement Coordinator; Forestry and Woodland Strategies; statement on appropriate circumstances for ministerial call-in of planning applications; and a range of powers to make regulations.

The Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Ancillary Provision) Regulations 2019 - Making several amendments to the Act to replace or delete references to sections of the 1997 Act that were removed during the Parliamentary process.

The Town and Country Planning (Changing Places Toilet Facilities)(Scotland) Regulations 2020 - Amend the types of development that require a Changing Places Toilet and the description of the facility, and add a minimum size / capacity limit. Planning Circular

The Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Commencement No.4 and Transitional Provision) Regulations 2020 - Brings into force provisions on Changing Places Toilets and powers to make regulations on short term let control areas. Policy Note

The Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Commencement No. 5 and Saving, Transitional and Consequential Provisions) Regulations 2020 - Brings into force provisions on planning obligations, including changes to the procedures for modifying or discharging obligations. Policy Note

The Town and Country Planning (Short-term Let Control Areas) (Scotland) Regulations 2021 – Draft Regulations – Sets the arrangements and processes for designation, variation and cancellation of Short-Term Let Control Areas.  Policy Note

The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development and Use Classes) (Scotland) Amendment Order 2020 – New and extended permitted development rights relating to digital infrastructure, agricultural developments, peatland restoration, development supporting active travel and aquaculture.  Policy Note

The Town and Country Planning (Pre-Application Consultations) (Scotland) Regulations 2021 – Amend the statutory requirements for Pre-Application Consultation which apply to major and national developments and specify criteria for exemptions.  Policy Note

The Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Commencement No. 6 and Transitional Provisions) Regulations 2021 – Brings into force provisions on Short-Term Let Control Areas and a time limit for planning applications following Pre-Application Consultation.  Policy Note


The regulations explained

Information note - PDF (382kB) - This explains the regulations laid in the Scottish Parliament up to 24 February 2021, bringing various sections of the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 into force. We will update it when further regulations are brought forward.


Draft NPF4 logo

The Draft National Planning Framework 4

Read the draft on gov.scot Take part in the consultation

Last Updated: 23 Nov 2021