The Death of Regional Planning – That Lasted Long (8 years and 3 months to be precise) @kitmalthouse

Of course every planner in the country knew it couldn’t last as it would restrict supply and some strategic growth locations could only be met with a strategic plan.  Its planning 101 stuff.  But it took Davis (Twat) Cameron’s Danny Dyer Moment demise to come about, and even then how many planing ministers (lost count?) later for the inevitable to come about Because of a 50 year failure to keep housing at the top of the domestic policy agenda it forced its way back to the top.

Of course planning is done the long term, units of a Pickle: that is a Boles 5 years (local plan phases) plus a Greg ( 3 years – the average delay to plans caused by one well meaning ‘planning reform’ after another)  plus a Rabb, 3 months (Mean lifespan of a spinal tap drummer, UK planning minister, and length of time between one change in UK planning policy and another).

Dear Eric, who has become a rather decent person in retirement (like a don who retires to keep a donkey sanctuary) always used to say he’ll get a gun from under his desk for anyone who mentions regional planning as a solution (to the problem he created).  Now Anchorman, in his infinite and commendable patience Steve, has taken that gun and buried it in a place even Jed Mercurio would have never have thought to put it.  Of course everyone, except in those places like West Northants who never got the postcode is regional planning again, some people haveforgot how to do it, many have retired and sadly a generation of planners has never learned.  But really, its is like riding a bicycle, you never forget.


Councils should plan strategically on regional or county level, says housing minister

3 October 2018 by John Geoghegan

The government wants local authorities to come together in ‘regional groupings’ and prepare strategic plans in return for Whitehall infrastructure funding, the housing minister has said.

DCLG Press Release

Published 6 July 2010

From:Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government ,(sadly government archive is wrong on mninistry then) The Rt Hon Lord Pickles, and The Rt Hon Greg Clark MP

Eric Pickles puts stop to flawed regional strategies

Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles is today (6 July 2010) putting a swift end to Whitehall’s grip on local planning policy by scrapping regional strategies and their centrally imposed building targets that failed to increase housebuilding.

Regional targets intended to build 3 million homes nationally by 2020 were put in place by the previous government despite fears that they would force councils to cut into the green belt….

From today, power will be handed back to councils and communities to make their own decisions on planning that can get the country building again. Communities will, once again, be able to solve local housing challenges in a way that makes sense for them. In return councils will be offered powerful new incentives that ensure they benefit from development they welcome.

Did it work – as you will see from this blog (has it really been eight years?) as well all predicted it slowed down, until the ‘build what you like where you like’ era, until as of course we all predicted that would never be enough because that needs big strategy sites which only big plans can deliver; and many would restrict the rate of release of use of their land as it was now an appreciating asset.  Now after eight years, the Letwin review, the quaint and sweet but ultimately tiny in a way only vicar of Dibly sized parishes can be, localist experiment, a white paper declaring the housing market broken  we are back to square one, older and more cyclical then ever.

At least the bastards fucking got it.  At last the fucking bastards got it.  Time for a planners party down the pub on Friday and a pint raised to Kit Malthouse.