Local plans and housing policies are failing to provide homes for older people and the most vulnerable, writes Michael Hardware. The article was published in Placemaking Resource. No one would argue with the fact that there is a housing crisis in the UK, caused by decades of not building enough new homes. Although the government is trying hard to address this, are our housing policies really working? Are we providing all the housing our communities need through local plans and housing policies? The overheated housing market, with ever-growing property prices, certainly impacts heavily on younger people – the […]Read More..
Analysis: Are our housing policies working for all?March 23rd, 2022 by Michael Hardware
Government planning reforms U-turnJanuary 10th, 2022 by Chelgate
Consultation to remain a key part of the planning process The Times today is reporting that the Government has changed its approach to reforming the planning system. The aim was to replace the existing planning process with a zonal system and mandatory housing targets. This would shift planning consent to the local plan stage with no need for applications to then come to planning committees. This would remove the opportunity for input from residents, reduce the role of local councillors in determining planning applications, and reduce consultation overall. The plans did provoke significant feedback from grass roots Conservatives […]Read More..
Transport DecarbonisationJuly 14th, 2021 by Christopher Morris
Today saw the publication of two important transport strategies. The EU Commission presented their Fit for ’55 Package, and the UK Govt published their long-awaited Transport Decarbonisation Package. These strategies will overhaul the energy and transport regulatory environments in the EU and UK. Below you can find links to both these publications and our initial headline takeaways. EU Commission Fit for ’55 takeaways CBAM One of the most ambitious parts of the Fit for 55 proposal is the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM). The Commission hopes this will prevent ‘carbon leakage’, where companies based in the […]Read More..
Latest Updates on the EU-UK Trade TalksOctober 16th, 2020 by Careen Becker
Chelgate Public Affairs has published the following briefing on news that No 10 sharpens no-deal rhetoric after gloomy European Council Summit conclusions on Brexit In a video statement given by the Prime Minister on post-Brexit trade deal talks, Boris Johnson said that the UK is prepared to walk away from the negotiations unless there is a “fundamental change” in the European Union’s approach. If the European Union is not willing to offer the UK a Canada-style free trade agreement with zero tariffs and zero quotas, Boris Johnson said that the UK is prepared to “embrace the alternative” […]Read More..
Tory backlash on radical reformOctober 15th, 2020 by Michael Hardware
Our Chelgate Local team has today published an article on plans by No 10 and MHCLG to bring root and branch reform of local government It would seem that plans by No 10 and MHCLG to bring root and branch reform of local government have quietly fallen into the very very long grass. Following a robust reaction from many councils and districts Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG) used the COVID-19 announcements by the PM on Monday to quietly publish a ministerial position statement. This was then also covered in a letter to councillors – which […]Read More..
Opinion: Can developer groups help enable better deliverySeptember 24th, 2020 by Michael Hardware
The following article written by Michael Hardware has been published in Placemaking Resource, part of Planning magazine. The article can be viewed on this link (registration required). By Michael Hardware, Chelgate’s director of planning and property. He is also a serving county and district councillor. Several counties have seen the emergence of developer groups in recent years. These should not be confused with developer forums which tend to focus on individual plan areas. Developer groups cover a county, appealing to housebuilders, developers and their consultants which operate there. They also work in partnership with Local Enterprise Partnerships, county […]Read More..
Planning reformAugust 7th, 2020 by Michael Hardware
The starting pistol on planning reform has been fired: the Government has today published a White Paper “Planning for the Future” for consultation. This coupled with the reform of local government potentially heralds a period of massive change for local government and developers in the coming years. The White Paper proposes to simplify the planning system, making it quicker, more democratic and leading to more homes being built; the target is 300,000 per annum, a million new homes during the life of the present government. Planning consultants will be pouring over the detail of the White Paper, reporting on […]Read More..
Restructuring of local governmentAugust 6th, 2020 by Michael Hardware
Town and county halls across the country are in a state of near panic as plans are brought forward by the Government for a major restructuring of local government. This would see the abolition of county, district, borough and some city councils to be replaced by unitary authorities and elected mayors. Although a commitment in the 2019 General Election manifesto, most thought it was unlikely these radical changes would be implemented, especially given the Covid 19 crisis. But Dominic Cummings has had other ideas. What is planned? This will be the biggest change in local government for decades, and […]Read More..
Housing need numbers halved in EssexJuly 29th, 2020 by Michael Hardware
Inspectors have written to at least two authorities in Essex with unadopted local plans asking them to review their housing need numbers. This follows publication of the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) 2018 household projections. The figures, published on 29th June, predict the number of households in England to grow on average by 149,960 per year over the next 25 years. This is a lower rate of growth than anticipated by ONS’s 2016 and 2014 publications. The Inspector examining Epping Forest District Council’s Local Plan wrote to the council on 16th July. In her letter she recommended that […]Read More..
Will Facebook’s Oversight Board Finally Tackle the Wild West of Social Media?May 27th, 2020 by Drew Manns
The Covid-19 pandemic, which has sparked an unprecedented surge in conspiracy theories, has shown us the real challenges of trying to tackle false narratives in emergency, or “wartime” situations. The sheer number, availability, and complexity of some stories are hard to comprehend. For instance, as Chelgate’s Terence Fane-Saunders pointed out in the latest episode of Opinion Battlegrounds, videos by some 5G conspiracy theorists are receiving hundreds of thousands of views. Moreover, at one stage “46,000 tweets linked to Covid-19 misinformation were published every single day”. With these facts in mind, it’s easy to see social media as a kind of […]Read More..