13 May

The UK desperately needs new homes – but not these hideous boxes

Even the housing minister admits the soulless developments gobbling up Britain’s countryside will soon have to be bulldozedA glance through the window of virtually any long-distance train reveals how much countryside is being gobbled up by identikit, soulless, mediocre housing designed around cars. Earlier this month, the housing minister, Kit Malthouse, predicted that many of the boxes being thrown up on the outskirts of towns would soon be “ripped down and bulldozed” as unsuitable.The evidence for his claim is simple. As Malthouse observed, housing is the one thing that virtually everyone likes to buy secondhand – and that means the issue of housing quality is now critical, particularly given the government’s aim to get 300,000 new homes built every year by the mid-2020s. But despite new planning guidance, billions being poured into financial support for housebuilding and land supply and growing political and public pressure over the shameful growth in homelessness, this government is no nearer to working out how to build enough good quality, affordable homes that will adapt to people’s changing needs. Continue reading…

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