Planning appeals can also be ‘recovered’ for decision by the Secretary of State, i.e. whereas normally the appeal would be made by the Inspector dealing with it, for a recovered appeal the decision would be made by the Secretary of State.
The Inspector will, as with called-in applications, hold a public inquiry and write a report that will make a recommendation on how the appeal should be determined. This will then be passed to the Secretary of State to make the decision, taking into account the inspector’s recommendations. Again, the Secretary of State's decision does not have to be in line with the Inspector's recommendations.
More information about this process can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/planning-applications-called-in-decisions-and-recovered-appeals