House builders lobbied cabinet privately to get planning relaxed

Barratt, Bovis and Redrow pressed for 'presumed yes' response to development applications

Ministers included the "presumption in favour of sustainable development" as a key plank of the draft national planning policy framework (NPPF), which is due to come into force next spring.
In June 2010, as the policy was being drawn up, the Home Builders Federation (HBF) demanded the presumption, using a strongly worded private letter that was circulated to Chancellor George Osborne, the communities secretary, Eric Pickles, the business secretary, Vince Cable, and the ministers for housing and planning, Grant Shapps and Greg Clark. The federation's representatives said the clause "must be introduced immediately", and that it was among the "absolutely essential requirements" of new planning policy.
The builders stressed that their communication was a "private letter to you and your ministerial colleagues and key government officials, which we are not planning to release to the press".
Housebuilders are poised to win permission to build thousands of homes on greenfield sites due to the policy.  They say that they were not the architects of this policy but it has been the stated policy of the Conservative Party since February 2010.  It featured in the Tory manifesto and is part of the Coalition agreement.
How does this affect SNUB well .....
Letters to ministers seen by the Guardian show how, after a meeting in July this year, with Steve Morgan, chairman of Redrow, in which the house builder complained about the "abuse" of judicial review laws used by opponents of developments, Eric Pickles wrote: "I am glad to hear that you will be working closely with my officials to follow up the issues we discussed."
Is a legal challenge a matter for the Courts?   This evidence suggests that this may now have been prejudiced by Government Officials and others.
A spokesman for CPRE is calling for the Government to rethink planning reform ‘The evidence suggests that some in government have allowed themselves to get too close to the development lobby”
The evidence from our Local Councils supports that view.

Funny, no suggestion that this was included in the interview with the Editor of the EDP.


  1. These are the legal partners of Broadland District Council chief planners and leaders who intend to completely ruin our Broadland countryside....these are the underhanded tactics that these 'greedy' individuals are stooping to in order to 'fill their troughs'...what really makes a huge 'mockery' of BDC's so-called 'planned and sustainable' developement is their partners are busy side-lining these plans to let 'real-rogue' developers through the back door...namely,themselves...Questions; were BDC aware of this lobbying? part of it? and more importantly, will BDC cancel their partnership with a developer who turns out to be the 'rogue'developer they have always warned us against? watch this space!.old Rackheath resident.

  2. We residents owe a lot to SNUB for keeping us informed as to what is going on behind closed doors. SNUB are the only ones who are on our side and fighting to save our community and countryside. The GNDP & BDC are in league with the developers and our Parish Councils are being spied upon and misled by BDC who has a spy who attends our P.C.meetings in order to report back every single detail.

  3. Well 'eres a laugh (But not really)...remember the so-called 'eco' education centre ( underway at Rackhesath Industrial Estate) where POD monies were handed to Mr.Hovey to build a training facility for eco-philes...well, 'check-out' the revised proposal to the original application ( passed already), followed by the 'additional travel plan statement'....strange, that the travel plan states that "the centre currently uses interactive e-learning and therefore, many learners will be undertaking remote learning and will not need to travel to Rackheath" ?..." many of the projects run from the centre will only require occasional visits from school students with much of the work conducted by outreach to schools and at field work locations" ?...well, I just don't get 'it'! why have a training centre for schools and students not to come to?. another BDC 'facade' with yet another waste of our money.Anon.

  4. The Eco Training Centre out in the wilds at Rackheath and not near a bus route is yet another piece of "Empire Building" by BDC at the expense of the Taxpayers. What are the SIX Economic Development Officers at Broadland actually doing to provide REAL jobs.