13:26 PM, 25th September 2013, About 10 years ago 2
In Ed Miliband’s speech at the Labour Party conference he warned “We’ll say to private developers, you can’t just sit on land and refuse to build. We’ll give them a very clear message – either use the land or lose the land. That is what the next Labour government will do.”
‘We’ll say to local authorities that they have a right to grow and neighbouring authorities can’t just stop them, we’ll identify new towns and garden cities, and we’ll have a clear aim that by the end of the parliament Britain will be building 200,000 homes a year more than at any time for a generation.”
However allowing local authorities to take back land from housebuilders would fail and would not deliver any new homes, warns property and planning law firm Winckworth Sherwood.
Karen Cooksley, a partner at Winckworth Sherwood said: “Successive governments have tried and failed to force the public sector to release land for housing. Forcibly taking land off house builders into the public sector will undoubtedly face legal challenges.
“Ed Miliband would be far better focusing his attention on making local authorities and other public sector organisations release land they hold for new homes as government has more direct control over them. He could start by making sure central government departments are first in line.”
Karen adds: “Home ownership is also not the only solution to solving our housing need. There is a real need to increase the size of the private rented sector in the UK on an enormous scale as not everyone wants or can afford to own a home. There is an appetite from new and institutional investors.
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