A step in the right direction
I breathed a small sigh of relief last week as the draft National Planning and Policy Framework
was published for public consultation. Finally it seems a step has been made in the right direction with the framework forming the basis for pro-growth planning.
It’s no secret that the nation desperately needs new homes and with an increasing population it beggars belief that 2010 saw the lowest levels of house-building since 1923. I’ve already lamented on this blog
the press’ focus on fluctuating house price figures rather than the fact that by next year there will be more households than there are houses.
It is crucial that we have planning in place that supports an increase in house-building and now this document is out for public consultation we hope this is an indication that the issues are being taken seriously and will be tackled head on. It’s what the nation needs!
Planning however only goes so far – note I only breathed a small sigh of relief. The success of the new framework is dependent on local authorities and their interpretation of what is and can only be viewed as in my opinion a very serious issue. With changes to planning made by Communities Secretary Eric Pickles
in the form of the Localism Bill
it does mean that through our communities we have some power. However it also means that a lot is riding on the interpretation of succinct policy and believe me when something is succinct there is plenty of room for interpretation.
Yet with reforms to ensure that housing decisions are made locally it’s down to you to speak up for your communities. As the largest privately owned house-builder
in the UK we will be doing all we can to ensure that the challenge of housing our nation is met. Ever the optimists we’re certain that the draft NPPF is the right step forward
Stewart Basely of the House Builders Federation
said with no added sense of gravity: “This is the most important planning document since the Town and Country Planning act of 1947 – it is vital we get it right.’ I wholeheartedly agree.By Sue Warwick - National Sales & Marketing Director Miller Homes