Statement to Parliament on Starter Homes Initiative – Another (Unworkable) Amendment to #NPPF

Just like the commercial conversions policy, there is a danger that this will see residential development sited cheek by jowl, with just the sort of commercial and industrial developments that generates noise, smell, light and various other complaints.
There’s also the very real danger that those who end up marooned in these developments, will have little, or no access to the sort of amenities that other residential areas take for granted. Even the most poor quality residential development, is likely to have some form of green space, or maybe even a corner shop.

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

Hansard Written Statement – numbers are only half those in the PMs Speech today, clearly Grant Shapps got his red pen out overnight and forgot to tell Brandon Lewis.

I would like to update hon. Members on the outcome of the Government’s consultation, launched by the Prime Minister in December, seeking views about our proposals for planning reform to support the development of 100,000 new high quality, low cost Starter Homes for young first time buyers.

We are determined to ensure young people are not denied what their parents took for granted – the opportunity to buy their own home, settle down and enjoy the security that home ownership brings. Nearly 192,000 households have now been helped by the Government to buy or reserve a home since 2010, through schemes like Help to Buy and the reinvigorated Right to Buy. But we know there are still far too many hardworking young…

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The Starter Homes Initiative Will Fail Because of the Requirement for Gardens

What a pity they didn’t offer some flexibility in this proposed policy, when cooking it up around the cauldron.
Surely, given the choice between what will, inevitably, be a ‘deceivingly spacious’ rabbit hutch (because we’ve seen not a sniff of a minimum room size spec from government have we?) with a garden and a house with decent sized rooms and good internal and external storage, what do you think most people would choose?
These decent homes, without gardens, would then have easy access to a nearby area of green space, that would be shared with their near neighbours. A much better way of promoting some feeling of community, than having everybody sat in their postage stamp size gardens, surrounded by a 1.8m fence.

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

The influence of the Astroturf Group Create Streets and Roger Scruton led Design Panel at work


“We’ve shown what we expect Starter Homes to look like not rabbit hutches or shoe boxes, but decent, well-built, homes with gardens – places to start and raise a family.

‘With Gardens’  these are starter homes not palladian villas, how many developments of brownfield sites in low affordability areas and targeted at first time buyers these days are houses with gardens, none, zero, and this if a requirement will make them unaffordable.

Consider the advice Peter Holland of Pins gave St Albans last week.

Mr Holland was told that “one problem for St Albans is that many in-migrants from London are able to pay considerable sums for housing.

“Consequently with much of the development … involving the redevelopment of sites containing older traditional family homes, even modest new family homes in St Albans…

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