The Planning for the Future White Paper proposes dramatic changes to the planning system and has given rise to serious concerns across many sectors. This is our full response submitted to the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government at the end of October.
While the stated aims of the White Paper should be outcomes that Bath Preservation Trust could support, we have serious misgivings about the actual potential impact of the Government’s proposals as set out. Principally, there is not enough detail to assess if the proposals will work.
Areas of greatest concern can be summarised as follows:
- Inadvertent weakening of environmental, heritage and green space protection.
- Loss of local democracy and community engagement.
- Failure to address true housing affordability.
- The challenge of resourcing, particularly in Local Authority and statutory consultees, to deliver the requirements for the reforms.
The urgent priority at this time is using the current planning system to incentivise the building of already-permitted houses, to mitigate climate change and to enhance biodiversity.
You can read our full consultation response here.
The government’s proposals can be read in full here.