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Gove urged: listen to local communities, not developers, on planning

17 September 2021

Commenting on government sources confirming a pause to changes to the planning system, Tom Fyans, deputy chief executive of CPRE, the countryside charity, said:

‘This reported pause to the government’s deeply unpopular changes to planning says one thing – you simply can’t cut out local voices when trying to decide what gets built where. Today could be a key turning point for the future of our countryside and rural communities in desperate need of genuinely affordable housing.

‘While we wait for the formal announcement, we will continue to work with concerned MPs on positive changes to the planning system that are long overdue. Nothing could be more urgent than empowering local communities to protect their precious green spaces while delivering the affordable homes they desperately need and, at the same time, responding to the climate emergency by regenerating the countryside.

‘As Michael Gove grapples with his new intray, we urge the government to take a fresh look at how to grasp this golden opportunity of creating a planning system fit for the 21st century that has people and nature at its heart.’

For further information, case studies or to interview a spokesperson, please contact Jonathan Jones, CPRE Media Relations Lead, 020 7981 2819 / 078 3529 1907.