The Scottish Government overruled East Renfrewshire Council on half of all planning appeals last year.

And there are concerns that decisions made locally are being overturned by “out-of-touch” ministers who are miles away in Edinburgh.

An annual report published by the Planning and Environmental Appeals Division shows that four appeals against planning decisions made by East Renfrewshire Council were lodged in 2021/22, with two of these being upheld by the Scottish Government.

Shadow Local Government Secretary Miles Briggs has accused SNP ministers of a “power grab” on councils and holding a “blatant disregard for local views.”

He is also bringing forward a Local Government Powers and Protection Bill in a bid to ensure East Renfrewshire Council and other local authorities are protected against “SNP centralisation.”

Mr Briggs said: “The SNP like to pretend they know what’s best for local communities but then they arrogantly overrule decisions made by councils.

“We know the impact planning application outcomes can have on local communities and it is those local people who know best how decisions will affect them.

“It shouldn’t be up to out-of-touch SNP-Green ministers who are miles away in Edinburgh to overrule local decisions.”

A spokesperson for East Renfrewshire Council said: “A recommendation on whether to approve or reject planning applications is either determined under delegated powers by planning officers or by the planning applications committee.

“Each application is determined taking account of the policies within the Local Development Plan and, on occasion, this leads to a different course of action than has been recommended in the report.

“If an application is refused, it is for the applicant to decide whether to appeal. It is important that the planning process has this oversight from the Scottish Government’s Reporter to ensure consistency.”

A Scottish Government spokesperson added: “The vast majority of planning appeals that come to Scottish Ministers are decided by an independent reporter who is required to take into account local views and make the decision on the planning merits of the case in accordance with the Local Development Plan, unless material considerations indicate otherwise.

“During the last financial year, 172 planning appeal decisions in Scotland were made by reporters. In contrast, some 27,000 planning applications are decided each year by Scotland’s local planning authorities.”