Getting homes built is a tricky business. The new National Planning Policy Framework encourages local based planning (rather than top down regional spatial strategies) and more local community engagement on plans and holding councils to account. A big concern is how to deal with local opposition to any new development plans. That’s a lot for local councils to take on at a time of severe cuts to their budgets, along with imminent decisions on who gets affordable housing and for … Read more
Long before working at Shelter, I had a bugbear about balconies. Yep, balconies. In my first few flats there was no little patch to grow plants, hang the washing up or just sit in the sun with a drink. That may sound petty, but whenever I see a new block of flats going up with measly little windows and no access to outside space, I want to scream.
We can all think … Read more
Much celebration here at Shelter HQ, as both Ken Livingstone and Boris Johnson have now backed our Mayoral election campaign and pledged to create Homes for London.
As the race enters its last week it is clearly a Ken-Boris contest, so it’s easy to ignore the other candidates, which is a shame, as they have done a lot to finally get housing onto the agenda. Both the Greens’ Jenny Jones and the Lib Dems’ Brian Paddick have backed Homes … Read more
Baby boomers have had a bit of an image problem lately. The ‘boomer’ generation born in the post-war period is (by and large) prospering after a prolonged period of economic growth (data geeks might want to refer to this (£) fascinating graph by the FT).
Younger generations, meanwhile, are increasingly fed up: fewer good jobs and pensions, and an unaffordable housing market that holds them back.*
It’s almost universally acknowledged that soaring house prices played a major role … Read more
One evening last week, a few of us from the Policy and Campaigns division made a little expedition to RIBA’s ‘A place to call home’ exhibition.
It was refreshing to get out the office and away from the coalface of the housing crisis that occupies most of our time and thinking. The exhibition focused on the wider social and emotional history of homes in Britain – why home is so important, what people want to make a good home, how … Read more
Today the Government finally published the detail of its new National Planning Policy Framework. It is a welcome recognition by the government that we need more homes, and building more homes is good for the economy.
During the messy row over the draft version, Shelter called for the framework to bring about the delivery of homes in the right places, of the right type and at the right price to alleviate housing need. So will it deliver genuinely affordable … Read more
No-one likes planners. Developers think of them as meddling bureaucrats at best, and Stalinist naysayers at worst. Some people resent them for being a barrier to economic growth. A minority hate planners for not allowing enough homes to be built – while simultaneously a majority seem to hate them for allowing homes to be built. Astonishingly, at the peak of the housing bubble in 2007, one in four households opposed a planning application that year. It seems we really … Read more