Housing and Planning Bill

This bill, which completes its passage through Parliament tomorrow (12 January), proposes to change the powers about housing, planning and compulsory purchase.

Ask your MP to oppose the Bill.

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Clause 102 introduces the concept of “permission in principle” which allows automatic planning permission on sites allocated for development without any scrutiny by the public or local authorities. Critics have said this will take power away from local communities and give it to private developers and central government. Caroline Lucas has introduced an amendment to remove this clause.

Caroline Lucas, Green, Brighton Pavilion
Extracts from speech
I rise to support my amendment 74. One of the many reasons I oppose the Bill is that it takes power away from local communities and places it in the hands of private sector developers and central Government. It is a profoundly undemocratic Bill, and nowhere is that clearer than in the plans for planning authorities.

I believe that local communities are best placed to understand the particular needs and detailed characteristics of their local area, but if such oversight is sidelined, we risk significantly compromising community resilience.

Nothing in the Bill will limit permission in principle to brownfield sites alone or prevent it from being applied to any development on any land allocated in a so-called qualifying document. The consequences are far reaching. As the Town and Country Planning Association has pointed out, fracking could easily be given permission in principle as part of a minerals plan, which would be completely unacceptable.

Ask your MP to oppose the Bill.

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