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Have your say: email your MP about proposed planning changes which will reduce local democracy

29th September 2020

New plans to vastly simplify the planning system into a basic zoning system where most land has a presumption for development could lead to an erosion of local democracy, loss of countryside, and worst of all, could still mean that much-needed new homes are not built.

The issue has been highlighted in both the Telegraph and Daily Mail this week, with the headlines ‘Tory heartlands will have to find space for 1.5m new homes’ (Telegraph) and ‘Tory heartlands will have to find space for 1.5million new homes under Government’s ‘mutant’ planning algorithm’ (Mail).

Commenting on House of Commons Library figures comparing the new method for determining housing supply to the previous method, Crispin Truman, chief executive of CPRE, the countryside charity, said:

‘Governing by algorithm simply doesn’t work. We are in the midst of a housing crisis, and we need many more well designed, genuinely affordable homes, including in rural areas. But combining this algorithm with far reaching, untested reforms to local planning, could result in irreparable harm to our countryside, without delivering the housing we actually need. Local authorities could be powerless to prevent developers cherry-picking green field sites whilst leaving brownfield land unused.

‘We urge the government to put their trust in local knowledge, listen to local people and empower local authorities to shape the areas they know and understand. A locally accountable planning system and not centrally imposed housing targets, will deliver the healthy, low carbon and affordable homes communities are crying out for. That’s why we’re calling for people and a thriving countryside to be at the heart of our future planning system.’

Email your MP if you want to express your concern at this proposal:

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