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Planning shake up needs to work for the countryside

The Government has revealed plans for some houses to receive automatic planning permission as it looks to ‘build, build, build’

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Planning shake up needs to work for the countryside

New homes in England will be granted automatic planning permission as the Government looks to cut red tape and get Britain building.

 

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick, writing in the Sunday Telegraph, suggested the current planning system was holding back housebuilding and he was ‘completely overhauling the system’ so more young families could own their own homes.

 

But Greenbelt land and areas of outstanding natural beauty will be protected by the new guidelines.

Land will be designated in one of three categories of growth, renewal or protection and landowners with land in the growth category could see permission granted automatically.

 

Rural potential

 

CLA director of external affairs Jonathan Roberts said there was ‘tremendous potential’ in the rural economy but without a planning regime that works for the countryside, this potential will never be realised.

 

“It is absolutely right to ensure significant elements of the rural environment are protected by the planning system.

 

“But the countryside is not a museum; rural poverty will only be eased, and opportunity only created, if we allow landowners to invest in their communities,” he said.

 

“This means allowing them to turn that old dairy into office space for small businesses, and allowing them to build some houses to create homes for families that will keep their villages alive.”

 

He added the Planning White Paper must ease the ‘considerable burdens’ on landowners.

 

“Government has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to provide sustainable economic growth in the countryside, with all the broader societal benefits that brings.”

 

Compromise

 

But the District Councils’ Network warned the plans could compromise on quality and side-line public consultation.

 

Councillor Mark Crane, lead member for stronger economies, said: “District councils and their local communities continue to grant nine in 10 planning permissions, while tens of thousands of homes with planning permission remain unbuilt – the housing delivery system is broken, not the planning system.”

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