Does the planning process bring out the worst in people?

Throughout my career in planning I have trotted out the mantra that planning brings out the worst in people. I could be standing in someone’s kitchen discussing the neighbours or retelling the tale of a feisty committee meeting. Someone seeking planning permission makes people fight their corner, on both sides of the fence. On occasions this fight can vehement.

An arson attack on council offices in Oxfordshire last week is believed to have been started after a planning application was rejected.

South Oxfordshire District Council leader John Cotton said the planning department “has pretty much disappeared”.

So, does the planning process bring out the worst in people? Quite possibly!

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