Please note that this Expression of Interest closed on 26 November 2021 and the eight successful councils have been announced.

In November 2021, the Department for Levelling Up, and Housing Communities (DLUHC) launched an Expression of Interest to find councils who want to explore ways to modernise planning software, so that it supports the vision set out in the Planning for the Future White Paper.

RIPA (Reducing Invalid Planning Applications) and BOPS (Back-Office Planning System) are software products that enhance and simplify the act of making and processing a planning application for applicants and council staff alike.

Through the RIPA/BOPS EOI, councils could apply to join the RIPA/BOPS project team to design and implement new development management software. Up to £400,000 of funding was available for the new councils to join the project team to design and begin implementing the RIPA/BOPS products.

Any Local Planning Authorities adopting RIPA/BOPS had to be able to work towards the Adoption Commitments.

A separate EOI was also launched for councils who wish to improve their existing development management software by working with their current service providers.

Learn more

Background on the RIPA/BOPS project

Since 2019, local authorities have been collaboratively developing two open source products: RIPA (Reducing Invalid Planning Applications) and BOPS (Back-Office Planning System).

RIPA allows applicants to submit planning applications to councils as data. It makes preparing and submitting a planning application as painless as possible for users, with the goal of reducing invalid applications.

BOPS makes planning data and records easily accessible through a modern interface designed around a planning officer’s user experience to increase efficiency throughout the planning application process.

Designed using modern approaches to digital design, RIPA and BOPS put the experience of the user – whether an applicant or planning officer – right at the centre of how they work.

By collecting and processing planning application information as data – rather than keeping it locked inside PDF documents – RIPA and BOPS open up new opportunities to improve the accessibility, transparency and efficiency of planning services.

Through taking part in building these products, partner councils are developing their digital planning capabilities to ensure they are equipped to deliver the planning services of the future.

Currently, the RIPA/BOPS service is processing live Lawful Development Certificate applications. In the future, the service will process full householder applications.

Hear the RIPA/BOPS story so far

Watch the recording of the RIPA/BOPS showcase in September 2021:


See what the products look like in action

Watch the recording of an end-to-end RIPA/BOPS demo:


9 November 2021

Expressions of Interest open

15 November 2021

Virtual Q&A session. Missed it? Read the questions and responses.

26 November 2021

Expressions of Interest close at 5:00pm

Mid-January 2022

Onboarding begins