Autumn Statement Reaction


Government plans to tackle the housing crisis, as revealed in the Autumn Statement, have been welcomed by Niall Blackie, Senior Partner and Head of Town and Country Planning at FBC Manby Bowdler.

But he called for ministers to urgently press ahead with plans for a White Paper on its proposals to tackle the lack of suitable homes and amendments to the National Planning Policy Framework.

Niall said: “The Chancellor’s pledge of an extra £3.7bn to encourage more house building in high demand areas and more affordable homes is very good news. As is the promised relaxation of the rules about grant funding for affordable homes to enable a better mix of housing to be built. 

“However I am disappointed that the much-anticipated Housing White Paper and the long overdue amendment to the National Planning Policy Framework appear to have been delayed again.

“The news that the White Paper is to be published ‘in due course’ leaves the industry with continuing uncertainty. Uncertainty breeds delay, and the shortfall of supply is keeping house prices artificially high.

“The Chancellor has accepted in his speech that the lack of delivery of affordable housing is having an impact on national productivity, which needs to be reversed urgently. 

"I would call on the Housing Minister to deliver quickly on the promised White Paper and on the changes to the NPPF because without those changes, the planning system will still tend to hold back developments.”

Click here to find out more about the Town and Country Planning services offered by FBC Manby Bowdler.

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