14 April 2023
MP Defends Rights for Local People to Agree New Housing

West Worcestershire MP Harriett Baldwin has defended the principle that local people should have their views respected when major housing developments are considered.

And the MP called on the Government to shift its policy away from nationally imposed housing targets to allow local people to have a clearer say on where to build new housing.

Harriett has shared her views after publishing her response to a consultation on the National Planning Policy Framework, which sets the national guidelines which local councils have to follow.

Over the last year, Harriett has been closely involved in efforts to make sure that nationally-imposed housing targets are only advisory, helping to take pressure off the larger villages to the west of Worcestershire which have borne the brunt of speculative planning applications and major new housing development.

And the MP has also spoken up for the villages who have developed their own democratically-approved Neighbourhood Plan which sets out where it would approve new building growth.

Harriett said:

“Over the last couple of years, we’ve seen a number of policy papers and draft legislation from the Government to return to nationally imposed housing targets and I have strongly resisted this policy.

“I have always said that planning needs to be decided by local people and their local representatives, and I strongly reject the idea that national policy makers should be allowed to impose new housing on us.

“Of course, this depends on having a strong and united set of local councillors who are able to take control of this issue and head off speculative planning applications.

“Nationally, I’m doing all I can to make sure that we get the right policy in place which allows communities to refresh and grow in a managed and organic way, together with the right investment in infrastructure in parallel with new house building.”