If Kevin Froude thinks that granting planning permission for new housing at Mitchelswood Farm, Newick, will help solve the housing crisis then he is the one being naive.
He certainly hasn’t understood this year’s Civitas and House of Lords reports, which show beyond all doubt that all it will achieve is to shift new housebuilding from sustainable urban brownfield locations, like Newhaven Marina or South Downs Avenue, Lewes, to the car-dependent rural greenfield sites in villages like Newick that house builders find more profitable.
The reports show that the recent increase in planning permissions has not been translated into extra housing. Instead developer land banks have grown.
So have the major house builders’ profits, as they focus on their most profitable sites. Their business model depends on steadily rising prices.
They will never choose to build enough houses to reduce prices, because it isn’t in their commercial interest. If we want more housing, then we need a new delivery model.
John Kay, CPRE Sussex
Rushey Green, Ringmer