He should be aware that all local planning authorities are under an instruction in PPG1 from central government to "reject obviously poor designs out of scale or character with their surroundings". If this does not involve aesthetic judgements, I do not know what does. The distinct advantage that local authorities have is that, unlike Lord Fawsley's committee of the great and the good, they have been elected by local communities to represent their interests.
I can assure him that this practice is thriving and forming an invaluable role in the protection of our built environment, so much of which has been ravaged in the past by developments blessed by the RFAC.
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