S. Oxfordshire ditches 5,000 homes from area plan

Aaron Morby 13 years ago

House builders fear the country is heading for housing disaster if councils follow South Oxfordshire’s lead and ditch construction targets.

The council said it was scrapping plans to build  5,000 homes just three days after submitting them in Core Strategy proposals.

The U-turn follows a letter from Eric Pickles, the Secretary for Communities and Local Government, who wrote to all local authorities telling them he wants to “rapidly abolish” regionally-set housing targets.

This gives the green light to local authorities to halt decisions on development plans and planning applications.

Oxfordshire had been expected to earmark areas for  40,680 homes by 2026. This included controversial plans to build 4,000 homes within the green belt to the south of Oxford, which have now been dropped.

HBF chairman Stewart Baseley said: South Oxfordshire’s announcement demonstrates the urgent need for clarity on housing planning policy.

“Scrapping the existing system without a replacement is a recipe for disaster. We have an acute housing crisis in this country, approaching a shortfall of a million new homes.”

He warned: “We just cannot afford a period of confusion to reduce house building still further at a time when we are already building at the lowest level for many decades.”

“The Government says it is committed to delivering more homes, but without urgent guidance, this aspiration will not be achieved,” said Baseley.

Oxford East MP Andrew Smith has put a question in the Commons to Eric Pickles, asking about the “supply of housing in central Oxfordshire”.

Mr Smith said: “If, as reported, the coalition Government simply leaves the planning of housing to district councils, it puts Oxford in an impossible position.

“The city’s boundaries are so tight against the built-up area that there is wholly insufficient land within its control to plan and provide the housing the city desperately needs.”

House builders expected the Government to introduce a new planning system, but argued for a clear and robust transition plan that did not damage  the supply of much needed homes across the country.

Latest news

Investment giant buys Bristol M&E contractor

RDCP Infrastructure acquires Avon Combined Electrical Services
52 mins ago

Demolition start for £50m Farnworth town centre rebuild

Caddick Construction is tipped for main works due to start in the spring
2 hours ago

L&G Modular strikes deal to build 1,000 affordable homes

Modular homes business teams up with Hampshire's Vivid housing association
2 hours ago

Former Erith operations director joins John F Hunt

Scott Exell named new operations director at demolition specialist John F Hunt
9 hours ago

Green light for £135m Leeds twin tower resi scheme

Construction to start in New Year on 500 build-to-rent apartments
17 hours ago

Mace hits 1m tonnes carbon saving target for clients

Present work pipeline betters 2026 carbon emission saving target
13 hours ago

Plans in for £40m surf park at former Kent colliery

Seahive surf lagoon and health resort will be built near Deal
1 day ago

Crushed demolition worker vows to return to industry

Shannon Brasier hoping to return to construction following horror accident
1 day ago

Mount Anvil to start 900-home North London estate rebuild

Planning approval paves way for Barnsbury Estate rebuild in Islington
1 day ago

Green light for major laboratory campus in Cambridge

Developer BioMed to tender first building on 600,000 sq ft lab complex in the New Year
1 day ago

Belfast firm signs the biggest work deal yet under Project Gigabit

Fibrus to hook-up rural Cumbria to lightning-fast broadband under £108m deal
1 day ago

McLaren wins Leeds logistics park contract

Work to start imminently on warehouse complex for Firethorn Trust
2 days ago

Work restarts on £683m waste power plant after site death

Construction suspended for a week of investigations following fatality
2 days ago

Demolition starts on £135m Wigan Galleries scheme

Contractor BCEGI starts work on project to redevelop Wigan town centre
2 days ago

Amey CEO to step down following private equity buyout

Amanda Fisher to leave once business is transferred to new owners
2 days ago

New body set up to vet plant operator card schemes

Contractor trades bodies unite to tackle competency concerns over plant operator skills cards
2 days ago

Kier leads switch to hybrid battery generators

Battery units work alongside smaller generators cutting run times by nearly 60%
2 days ago

Plans in for first Leeds co-living scheme

Watkin Jones submits plan to convert old Direct Line HQ into 230 studio flats
2 days ago

Demolition worker crushed by excavator

Court hears 20-year-old woman was left with "life changing injuries"
3 days ago

Government pays £700m for 50% stake in Sizewell C

New body, Great British Nuclear, will be set up to develop pipeline of nuclear projects
3 days ago

Costain wins Heathrow Airport asset renewal deal

Firm takes early contractor involvement role in Terminal 2 baggage handling upgrade
3 days ago

Worker killed on £683m waste power plant site

Fatal collision involving heavy goods vehicle on giant north London site
3 days ago

HS2 JV shifts four Wembley Stadiums of earth in record time

EKFB team digs and hauls 15 million cu m of muck in 20 months
3 days ago

Milestone wins £300m Wiltshire highways upkeep

Ringway will hand over to Milestone in March next year
3 days ago

Low-risk business model helps Renew post record results

Renew reveals latest acquisition with £15.6m purchase of water specialist Enisca
3 days ago

London Albert Embankment hotel towers approved

Two separate hotels rising to 26 and 29 storeys approved
3 days ago

Keltbray names new director of strategic engineering

Tim Lohmann takes up newly-formed role to drive innovative engineering solutions
3 days ago

Go-ahead for £200m lithium refinery on Teesside

Work to start next year on Europe's first lithium hydroxide processing plant
4 days ago

HS2 agency workers paid the wrong wages

Payroll software problems leave workers out of pocket
4 days ago

Electric car whizz joins O’Rourke

Contractor looking to learn tech lessons from other sectors
4 days ago

Contractor services