What gets built and where
CPRE Norfolk campaigns to protect and enhance the Norfolk countryside. We support the provision of new housing of the right kind, especially truly affordable housing, if built in the right places.
However, we have grave concerns over the impact of excessive housing targets on the character of our county. These targets are dictated by central government and set by local authorities. Meeting these targets will lead to a significant loss of countryside, a reduction in rural tranquillity, increased light pollution and traffic levels. This will have a negative impact on nature, leading to climate change.
All of Norfolk’s District and Borough Councils have increased housing targets with the Greater Norwich area facing the prospect of an especially high level of new development.
For example, the new local plan proposed for Broadland, South Norfolk and Norwich (Greater Norwich Local Plan – GNLP) provides for a minimum of 49,492 houses to be built by 2038.
We are campaigning to reduce housing targets across Norfolk in an alliance with local community groups concerned about the impact on their communities.
Our positive solutions really do offer a better way forward.
CPRE Norfolk wants to see
- Sites allocated for housing in existing plans developed before any new sites can be opened up for construction
In the Greater Norwich area alone there are sites for over 30,000 houses which have not yet been built. This phased approach to housing is plain common sense and has won widespread support from parish and town councils
- A Brownfield first policy
With special attention given to converting redundant shops and offices to residential use.
- An end to plans to build new settlements in the countryside
Such as the “Garden Village” proposed for the area between Billingford, Bintree and North Elmham.
- Prioritisation of the provision of social, affordable housing
Provide housing for those most in need.
- Stricter building regulations
To ensure that all new buildings are carbon neutral.
Our proposals would
- reduce Greenfield development
- tackle land banking
- prevent the establishment of new settlements in the countryside
- provide housing for those most in need
- help combat climate change
- revitalise our ailing town centres
Surely a more attractive future than that offered by the volume house builders.
Local Plans go through a long process before they are adopted: once they are they form a blueprint for development of all kinds for the following years.
CPRE Norfolk engages with all Local Plans across the county and has been heavily involved with the various stages of the GNLP, which is the plan for Norwich, Broadland and South Norfolk. In February and March 2022, the draft GNLP will undergo an Examination in Public, conducted by a government-appointed inspector. CPRE Norfolk has submitted evidence prior to this Examination and will be represented at it by a team including barrister, James Neill from Landmark Chambers.
The focus of CPRE Norfolk’s input will be to try to persuade the Inspector that the housing targets in the draft plan are unnecessarily high, as they are 22% (and more likely to be over 30% when all is taken into account) higher than central government demands. Such excessive numbers would be damaging to the climate, the environment, residents’ lives and to the countryside.
CPRE Norfolk’s written statements for the GNLP Public Examination can be read here (available from 5th February 2022)