Rule change could see 30,000 more homes built in the area

18 Aug 2020

Changes to the planning system could see the county's countryside ruined by allowing thousands of new homes to be built in a developer 'free for all', a councillor has warned. As part of sweeping changes to the planning system revealed by the Government earlier this month, councils may have to use a new method for calculating the number of new homes it will need to build in the future.

The latest review of the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) - the major planning blueprint which will set out where homes will be built in the next 20 years - whilst facing a significant delay has set out a need for around 14,000 more homes up to 2041.

Malvern Hills district councillor Paul Bennett was very concerned by the huge numbers of homes that would be built in some of the county's rural areas.

"It appears that in Malvern Hills and Wychavon our wonderful countryside, beautiful towns and villages are expected to take double the ridiculous number of so-called 'executive homes' we face already," he said. "This is despite vast numbers of these drab, featureless mass-produced boxes blighting our communities already and thousands already with planning permission not being built. What is worse for us all is that this 'free for all' does not help at all with the real need here for houses to rent. It is clear, we are being forced to build London and the South East's housing need here and there is absolutely no justification for this happening."

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