The Welsh countryside has been left wide open to speculative developers due to a failure to act by the Welsh Government.
The monitoring of housing land supply has highlighted a shortfall in deliverable land. As at 1 April 2017 nineteen out of the twenty-five local planning authorities were unable to demonstrate a five-year housing land supply, including where LDPs have only recently been adopted. This situation has resulted in an increase in the number of speculative planning applications for housing.
“Councils across Wales have seen speculative housing developments in the open countryside for some years now. The Welsh Government has been made aware of these problems by many communities but chose to support appeals by developers in the face of local democratic decisions and opposition. The minister even opposed one such development in her own constituency, where 365 homes were allowed on appeal in Llay.
“The Government is trying to close the stable door after the horse has bolted. Thousands of unnecessary houses have been granted permission while ministers dawdled and delayed.
“So, while I welcome the proposed suspension because it will provide greater safeguards for communities, it is too little, too late for many developments.”
“If the Labour government had been quicker in recognising the problem, which was apparent to all, then it would have been possible to resist many of these large-scale housing developments. As it is, large swathes of our countryside have been left defenceless.”