Brandon Lewis Speaks Out About Plots & Planning

Housing minister identifies brownfield land and fast-track planning permission as key improvements for housing delivery
by Andrew Hobbs
7th March 2016

Minister for Housing and Planning Brandon Lewis has spoken further on the Government’s plans to ease the road to home ownership.

His article on the Conservative Home website promotes the various schemes to be enacted by the Housing and Planning Bill, amongst them council housing, affordable homes and Help to Buy. Of particular interest to self-builders however, are his comments on brownfield plots.

Lewis claims that the Bill will prioritise brownfield building near existing residents while protecting the green belt.

“I know you have heard this from every politician, forever, but give me a break: judge us on the results. My target is to have planning permissions in place for 90 per cent of brownfield sites on the new statutory register by 2020,” says Lewis. “And under Right to Build, councils will be required to identify and supply shovel-ready plots, so self-builders don’t get worn down by municipal delays.”

The Government is certainly keen to convey its eagerness to make self-build plots available. It will be interesting to see whether councils are able to meet the demands of the new registers and just how readily local authorities will grant planning permission.

Support for identifying and redeveloping brownfield sites will obviously be forthcoming, but most councils will be required to go far beyond that in order to meet demand.

Lewis also mentioned fast-track planning processes and planning permission in principle, promising to return to them in a future article. We’ll be sure to keep you updated.

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