LGA responds to new laws to extend homes upwards and relaxing of planning applications

“The planning system is not a barrier to housebuilding with nine in 10 planning applications approved by councils. It gives local communities the power to shape the area they live in and provides an effective means of balancing the interests of homeowners and their neighbours.


House under construction with two people debating on a certain aspect of the design

Responding to new laws laid in Parliament today which will mean full planning applications will not be required to demolish and rebuild unused buildings as homes, and will allow homeowners to add up to two additional storeys to their home to create new homes or more living space, Local Government Association housing spokesman, Cllr David Renard, said:

“The planning system is not a barrier to housebuilding with nine in 10 planning applications approved by councils. It gives local communities the power to shape the area they live in and provides an effective means of balancing the interests of homeowners and their neighbours.

“Neighbours have the right to a say on development and should not be exposed to the potential of unsightly large-scale unsuitable extensions being built unchallenged and without scrutiny in their communities.

“Taking further planning powers away from communities and councils will only deprive them of the ability to define the area they live in and know best. It risks giving developers the freedom to ride roughshod over local areas with communities having no way of ensuring they meet high quality standards, provide any affordable homes as part of the development or ensure supporting infrastructure such as roads, schools and health services are in place.

“It is vital that councils and local communities have a voice in the planning process and are able to oversee all local developments.”
 


Notes to editors

  1. The LGA represents more than 330 councils of all types across England. We work on behalf of our members to support, promote and improve local government.
  2. It is councils who had led communities through the COVID-19 crisis. Our recent polling shows that 71 per cent of residents trust their council and two thirds are satisfied with the way their local council runs things in their area. Our new discussion paper - Re-thinking Local - sets out how councils must now be empowered to locally-lead the COVID-19 recovery and tackle the economic, environmental and community challenges that we will face as a result of the pandemic.