The Scottish government claims it is on the verge of a significant breakthrough in speeding up the planning process after a sharp rise in the number of appeals being heard within 12 weeks.

In November, 37% of all written-submission appeals were decided in that timescale, compared with 4% in April.

The government says it is now on track to hit its target of 50% by April, a move that it claims will remove the equivalent of 80 years of dead time from appeal processing every year.

A slow planning process has been identified by business as one of the main problems hindering economic growth.

Sunday Times