Everyone deserves access to the highest quality affordable housing to rent or buy. I'll continue to work with the Government and East Devon District Council to make sure the right building targets are in place for where housing is needed most.
We have a housing crisis in the UK. We need more houses, including more affordable housing. East Devon District Council’s Local Plan, which is the main strategic document to shape the District between 2013-2031, states that 17,000 houses need to be developed over that period of time, with particular focus on Cranbrook and Exmouth.
While I acknowledge the need for more housing, I want to see housing in the correct vernacular, in the right place and in the right setting. Building ‘cookie cutter’ houses, which all look the same around the country, does nothing for our local communities and creates division in our rural areas.
I am also very keen that brownfield sites should be prioritised for development over any greenfield sites. For example, the former bus and coach station in Exeter badly needs to be redeveloped.
I spoke at a Campaign to Protect Rural England event in January 2018 and called for better quality housing, in the right areas, that fit the size and feel of the local area.
This is why it is so important that our local communities develop their Neighbourhood Plans as quickly and thoroughly as possible. You can find out more about your local Neighbourhood Plan and its progress by visiting the East Devon District Council website here.
I am organising a public event with the Housing Minister and the Campaign to Protect Rural England.