A clue as to why housing costs so damn much

Unless ministers produce a drastically different document in the next few weeks, this experience is going to become commonplace throughout the country, not least because – as a report by the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) will reveal on Monday – the reforms will withdraw a 25-year-old safeguard from more than half of the English landscape.

Yes, the NIMBYs have managed to make half the country off limits to building.

For a quarter of a century, planners have been obliged to take “the intrinsic character and beauty” of such wider countryside into account. The draft NPPF scraps the safeguard. This will make it much easier to build on the Oakham site, in almost all of the rest of Rutland, and on 55 per cent of England’s rural land.

What excellent news! Much more land that can potentially be built upon, thus the scarcity costs, which are more than half of the cost of housing in the South, should fall and housing will become \”more affordable\”.

Isn\’t that just great? A government actually doing something which solves the identified problem?

10 thoughts on “A clue as to why housing costs so damn much”

  1. Hmm. I think “the intrinsic character and beauty” of the countryside are quite important. I can’t help thinking that there might be better ways of increasing the housing stock, especially within large cities where the greatest shortages seem to be.

  2. Not much point critiquing that particular article. Soon as I’d got a sentence into the extract I’m thinking, that’s Geoffrey Lean that is. Checked the link. Yep.
    Geoffrey Lean isn’t a journalist. Not by any sensible standard anyway. He simply rehashes handouts from various interest groups until he’s enough to fill a column. If that’s journalism, then a small ads page of a chuckaway is superior journalism, as it addresses more issues.
    The only real value in a Lean column is the mental exercise trying to work out if the press release he’s recycled this week is directly contradicting the one he pushed last.

  3. I’m surprised Gordon Brown didn’t push this through. It’s going to be hard to get it past Tory MPs. I just hope it’s not watered down too much.

  4. That article is just funny. The countryside around Oakham is indeed beautiful, I value it greatly, and it is where I am from, so far as a wanderer like me can be from anywhere.

    But there is easily a thousand square miles of it. The idea that fatal damage will be done to it by sticking another housing development off the Uppingham Road is quite ludicrous.

    I noticed, by the way, that the phrase “classic vale landscape of valleys and fields” comes from the 2003 Rutland Landscape Assessment, where it describes the whole of the Vale of Catmose, north and south of Oakham, not some specific spot to the south.

    What is distinctive about the south of Oakham is that the areas around Cricket Lawns and the Stamford Road are where the most expensive houses are. Fancy that!

  5. “But there is easily a thousand square miles of it. The idea that fatal damage will be done to it by sticking another housing development off the Uppingham Road is quite ludicrous.”

    Housing developments are like peanuts at a cocktail party. No-one – really, no-one – ever stops at ‘just one’…

  6. Why must the land be used up because it is there?
    Especially touchy if tribalisation really gets going.
    How can white flight take place if there is nowhere to go.

  7. If you really want lebensraum why not annex scotland

    Because this weekend is about the only time in recent history that Scotland, comparatively, doesn’t have weather that would make the English political class run and hide under the nearest Kuoni brochure.

    Also, Glasgow is in the way. It’s like Hitler having to avoid Switzerland in his various invasions would have been if all the natives spoke Switzerdeutsch (and therefore been entirely incomprehensible to German speakers.) With added machetes.

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