Government White paper on Housing

You may have seen that the government published a white paper on housing this mont which has has received mixed responses.

This is a complex document and comes after much prior consultation. The complexity is shown in some of the reviews. One pundit quotes 29 Key Points while the FT can only find 5!

For local communities the message was:

“the Government is offering a simpler and clearer planning process that makes it easier for them to get involved and shape plans for their area. We will ensure they see the benefits of housing growth and have greater say over the design of local developments. In return, the Government asks communities to accept that more housing is needed if future generations are to have the homes they need at a price they can afford.”

The release is a mixture of policy supported by the results of past consultations and a series of new consultations

There is a lot of focus on brownfield sites. In Goudhurst the garage site by the Green Cross was recently granted planning permission but there are few such sites remaining in the parish.

The Policy White Paper talks specifically to Neighbourhood planning (page 29) noting that  over 270 NDP’s have been put in place since 2012. The white paper promises to strengthen the support for communities and this can only help our efforts.

There is considerable focus on the planning process and the role of local authorities in delivering development. We will try to understand  the challenge this might represent for TWBC and the potential impact on their current activities.  TWBC are in the middle of developing their own Local plan with a draft for consultation. This is due in mid-2017 with the formal plan published in 2018. .  Our NDP plan and the local plan will need to work together and at present our schedules compliment each other.

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