Building land debate gets a bit more gritty

Council planners with the worst records for allowing developers to build on greenfield land in East Anglia are named and shamed today in a new report.

Council planners with the worst records for allowing developers to build on greenfield land in East Anglia are named and shamed today in a new report.

Countryside champion the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) has praised councils working with developers to lead the way in breathing new life into towns and cities and sparing green spaces from the bulldozer.

But the organisation has also pointed the finger at those which fail to use previously developed brownfield land for new homes - or which allow developers to build homes at wastefully low densities per hectare.

However, councils cited in the poorly performing list, including Yarmouth and Waveney, have hit back by saying that the figures are out of date and do not accurately reflect the situation.


You may also want to watch:


Out of a total of more than 300 councils in England outside London, less than half have succeeded in having at least 90pc of their new homes built on brownfield land - as opposed to never developed greenfield land - according to the latest government figures.

Thirteen councils covering medium-sized and larger towns (40,000 plus people) built less than one third - or 33.3pc - of new homes on brownfield land, including Yarmouth 31pc and Waveney 25pc.

Most Read

But David Holland, a spokesman for Waveney Council, said the figures are already out of date.

"Our figures for 2003/04 were 30pc, 2004/05 42pc, 2005/2006 39pc. We will never be a Watford which got 100pc but we are certainly moving in the right direction."

The figures also show that more than 100 councils across England are still wasting land by granting planning permission for new homes at densities which average less 30 homes per hectare.

Peter Warner, head of planning and development at Yarmouth Borough Council, said: "In 1998/9 the then Local Plan Inspector supported greenfield development, which made it difficult for the council to meet regional and county levels of 50pc.

"The survey also hides the low number of dwellings completed two years ago - just over 100, with only a handful built on expensive to develop brownfield sites."

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus