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Opinion: On the bus(es) – 24’s day with the Homes for Britain Tour

4th March 2015

By Max Salsbury, 24dash reporter It’s not often that the 24 team take flight from 24 Towers. Beset by hideous constraints from all sides, we tend to stay in - and stay safe. However, the pull of a Routemaster bus winding its way through England’s winter-haunted South proved too much to resist, thus myself and Editor-in-Chief Jon Land took to the road. We hit Bristol around 2.30pm (note for road fans, we went M50, M5, M32). “So where’s this bus?” Jland asked, ever the j...

What happened to the home of the future?

4th March 2015

Past predictions of what the modern British home would look like in 2015 have proven to be well wide of the mark. Lifestyle retailer Chums asked over-50s what they had predicted to find in the home by 2015, back when they were teenagers - and whilst some were spot on about modern innovations, most got things wildly wrong. Some forecast the downfall of the kitchen, with 19% of people predicting that food would be replaced with flavoured pills. (We may have Smarties, but that wasn’t what they mea...

Opinion: The dog that ate its leg

3rd March 2015

By Colin Wiles, housing consultant and SHOUT campaigner When I read the sketchy details of the government’s Starter Home initiative I was reminded of that online video of a dog trying to eat its own leg. Even a child knows that eating your own body is not a viable way to sustain yourself, and will lead to your demise in the long term. Not only will the Starter Homes initiative fail to boost housing supply in any significant way it will also replace much-needed affordable housing with new homes...

Housing now biggest concern for Londoners

3rd March 2015

Housing is now the most important issue for Londoners, a poll has revealed. The 2014 London Survey found that housing is the capital’s chief concern, with 87% of people agreeing that more homes are needed. In 2011 the survey found that the top priorities were education, crime and policing. Londoners are also highly concerned about the cost of living, with 92% of those who responded to the survey claiming that it has gone up in the last year. The top 11 priorities in order of levels of con...

TUSC: Money is there for mass council housebuilding scheme

3rd March 2015

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) has said that both the Labour and Conservative parties have got it wrong on housing – and has pledged to create a new generation of council homes. The TUSC, which has plans to stand in 100 parliamentary and 1,000 council seats, has made housing a central theme of its ‘anti-austerity challenge’, has also said that it would cap rents. Dave Nellist, TUSC national chair and prospective parliamentary candidate for Coventry North West, said...

Concerns over Scotland’s social housing delivery

3rd March 2015

The Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA) has expressed its concerns after the release of the latest housebuilding statistics. The government’s figures show that there were 435 housing association completions between July and September 201, 43% down on the same quarter in 2013, while there were 198 housing association approvals between July and September 2014, 22% down on the same quarter in 2013. Susan Torrance, SFHA policy manager, said: “The SFHA notes with concern, th...

Housebuilding output up 6%

3rd March 2015

The number of homes built in Scotland in the 12 months to the end of September 2014 was up 6% compared to the previous year, new figures have shown. The country saw 15,436 homes completed in the period, 901 homes more than in the year to end September 2013. The Scottish government says the figures equate to a rate of 289 per thousand people in Scotland compared to 214 in England and 194 in Wales. In the same period there were 11,828 private sector-led starts, 10% higher than the previous year. ...

Towns to get empty homes money

3rd March 2015

Scottish towns will be able to bid for funding to help them find ways to develop empty and underused properties, social justice secretary Alex Neil has announced. The Scottish government's new asset mapping funding pots will give development trusts the chance to conduct surveys, work with stakeholders and consult with their communities on the best methods of rejuvenating their town centres. Neil announced the £50,000 fund on a visit to Clackmannan, where a development trust was established ...

Brandon Block: Housing minister reopens brick factory

2nd March 2015

Housing Minister Brandon Lewis has today officially reopened a formerly mothballed brick factory in Surrey. Building material firm Wienerberger reopened its Ewhurst brick factory after pledging to invest £25 million in the UK’s economy and help alleviate the housing shortage. The reopened factory will contribute to an increase in Wienerberger’s brick production by 200 million units annually, the equivalent of approximately 25,000 new homes. Today's event at the factory, which w...

Doubts that coalition’s starter homes will reach intended target

2nd March 2015

The British Property Federation (BPF) has expressed doubts that the coalition government’s changes to national planning policy in order to deliver 100,000 cut-price homes for first time buyers will successfully deliver. Though welcoming the move, the BPF is concerned that the changes - which will exempt developers from providing an affordable home contribution and paying the community infrastructure levy - will not reach their intended target, given that there will not be many sites that are ...