Homehaus | 12th May 2013 |
Councils across the UK have been urged to make publicly owned land available to make it easier for self-builders to create their dream homes.
Speaking at the Grand Designs Live event in London last week, UK planning minister Nick Boles said some local authorities, such as Bristol Council, have implemented ways of identifying suitable pieces of land of self-build projects, and that others need to follow suit.
The minister, who was speaking as part of National Self Build Week, wants councils to take action and help boost the number of self-built properties across the country. Currently the UK has the lowest level of self-build homes in Europe, far behind national averages in Austria, where 80% of new homes are self-build projects, and more than 50% in Scandinavia, Germany and Belgium.
‘We urgently need to build more homes and now is the time for councils to act and earmark areas that encourage people to buy a plot of land and get a builder to build them a home,’ he explained.
‘We are determined to help families fulfil their dream of building their own home and are keen to work with the industry to showcase those councils leading the way in making specific sites available for self build, so aspiring homeowners can turn their plans into a reality,’ he said.
As well as Bristol, other councils are taking steps to make self build a more viable option - in Cornwall local land trust organisations are working with self-build groups to identify potential build sites, in Derby a resident led association is planning 200 new homes on the grounds of a former Rolls Royce factory and in Cherwell the council has established a ‘Build!’ initiative which will provide 250 homes with the renovation of empty homes and the provision of serviced plots.
Photo credit: Venteco/Flickr