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Cameron pledges 'Tory housing revolution'

06/10/2011
Cameron pledges 'Tory housing revolution'

David Cameron yesterday promised to inspire a new Tory housing revolution and reaffirmed his commitment to planning reform and building more affordable homes.

In his speech to the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester, the Prime Minister said he recognised there was a failure in the housing market, which he blamed on the debt crisis and the former Labour government.

"The failure of the housing market is bound up in the debt crisis. Because lenders won't lend, builders won't build and buyers can't buy," he said.

"We're sorting this out, bringing back the right-to-buy," he said.

"We will use the money to build new homes. Macmillan made us the party of the property-owning democracy. Margaret Thatcher gave people the right-to-buy.

"Now let us, in this generation, inspire a new Tory housing revolution."

His revitalised right-to-buy scheme will usher in more attractive discounts to buy, and is expected to allow the construction of 100,000 new homes as money is channeled into a second wave of affordable housing grants.

Government also plans to release thousands of acres of public land for house building. A further 100,000 homes could be built under the new scheme, which will allow house builders and housing associations to build now and pay later.

He also said he sympathised with sections of the public concerned for the safety of the green belt under plans for a new National Planning Policy Framework.

"Now I know people are worried about what this means for conservation. Let me tell you: I love our countryside and there's nothing I would do to put it at risk.

"But let's get the balance right. The proportion of England that is currently built up is 9%. Yes, 9%.

"There are businesses out there desperate to expand, to hire thousands of people - but they're stuck in the mud of our planning system.

"Of course we are open to constructive ideas about how to get this right."

 

Cameron said: "It's hard to blame local people for opposing developments when they get none of the benefits.

 

"If new homes get built - you keep the council tax. This is a localist plan from a localist party."

Modern Masonry Alliance Director, Mike Leonard added, “We welcome the Prime Minister’s call for a housing revolution and his strong advice to those who stand in the way of growth and jobs by opposing development.

“Lack of finance, however, is about to result in a collapse in housebuilding as public money evaporates and the banks restrict lending to business and require unattainable levels of deposit from potential home buyers.

“If the PM really wants a housebuilding led recovery to create the 200,000 jobs he has promised he has to unlock public and private finance right now!”