Housing and planning

The government will legislate to introduce a points based system of migration control. The plan is to reduce numbers coming in to take low paid work, and to ensure anyone entering to work comes to a job that has been identified.

The government has  not set out any numbers yet, but presumably the plan is to have fewer migrants in total than we have been experiencing in recent years with EU freedom of movement. This should have a knock on effect to national and local plans, which currently need to cater for a large and continuing expansion of demand for homes from a variety of sources including from strong inward migration.

In Wokingham the Council has responded with a large approved building programme under the current local plan. As we look forward to the successor plan we need to reduce the future numbers of extra homes planned to take account of the large number already allowed. We need green gaps between settlements, protection of woodland and good farmland, and maintenance of flood plain.

Many of the homes now being built are being built on low lying land which creates more drainage problems. There are limits to how much drainage can achieve as it just dumps the water more quickly into the river system which itself is prone to flooding.

We also need to plant more trees and create more woods, not rip them out to concrete over the landscape.

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145 Comments

  1. Lifelogic
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    There is a problem with a lot of new housing in that the quality is so poor and often they are so packed in that now later expansion is possible. Access road too narrow, Insufficient road parking for guests, Often forcing people to move quite quickly (rather than any later extensions). This can then get very expensive due to the excessive costs of moving, caused mainly by absurdly high stamp duty rates in expensive houses.

    This is largely an excessive tax on the South East. Often levied on people who are already suffering from high house prices and might well be buying a far smaller house than someone else in a cheaper area who is perhaps paying little or no stamp duty.

    • Anonymous
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      And estate agents raking in fees based on percentages.

      • miami.mode
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:38 am | Permalink

        Almost everybody involved in housing has a vested interest in prices continually going upwards.

      • NickC
        Posted January 14, 2020 at 11:55 am | Permalink

        Anon, And the government raking in enormous fees in the shape of stamp duty.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:19 am | Permalink

      ‘Tomorrow’s Slums’ brought forward to todays world – to stroke the ego of Central Government, even a Conservative one.

      Central Government has no knowledge of local situations, asperations and needs – they are everyone of them different from one and other. A top down one size fits all fails and fails BIG. Central Government appears to have got involved in local council matters as it lost its main purpose to the EU Commission.

    • NickC
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

      Lifelogic, Like any other tradable item, house prices are governed by supply and demand. A number of factors influence both. But clearly the prime reason houses in the SE are hugely higher than elsewhere in the UK (and why house prices in general are too high) is there are too many people demanding houses.

      Essentially our house supply side would have been adequate for our nation without the massive immigration over the last 25 years. It is preposterous to claim that a nation the size of the UK cannot supply its own doctors, scientists, IT people, and apple pickers. Despite the CBI/NHS/etc whingers we simply do not need to import labour.

      • Paul McGreevy
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:20 pm | Permalink

        The government darent tell you it needs more young people coming in to pay for the old people all the time or the country will go bust. The government darent tell you that if supply of housing exceeds demand the prices of houses goes down and they will get kicked out of govt. The govt. darent tell you they just hate the idea of an all white society because they think non whites can never be free of discrimination if the white majority is too big, they are driven by social engineering. Immigration is an addiction for politicians so don’t expect it to come down any time soon.

        • a-tracy
          Posted January 14, 2020 at 11:01 am | Permalink

          Why Paul, a higher figure than ever over 60s and over 65s are working, and the age at which national insurance contributions from both employer and employee rose by four years for women about four years ago and are set to rise for men and women to 67 shortly so contributions have increased massively?

  2. Lifelogic
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    Steve Baker today in the Telegraph is surely right.

    Prioritise American trade talks over the EU. This is no time for timidity. Parallel negotiations will stop us becoming a rule-taking satellite of Brussels.

    How much is HS2 wasting every single day that the government delays cancelling it? Do we have a sensible government now on not. It seems not.

    • DOMINIC
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 6:54 am | Permalink

      Tim Montgomerie believes the UK will embrace EU alignment across all areas. PM Johnson is extremely efficient at pulling the proverbial wool over the eyes of many.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

        If you want a more distant relationship with Europe you should not panic.

        That can be done on an area-by-area basis, as matters for competing election manifestoes, the proper way.

        Accordingly, those proposals would be subjected to detailed scrutiny and impact analysis.

        Ah, there’s the rub!

        Better to crash out in a horribly complex, confused, obscure mess right now, and smear the blame left, right, and centre?

        • NickC
          Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

          Don’t panic so, Martin. We will be ruled by your precious corrupt dirigiste EU empire on 1 Feb 2020 just as we are now.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

        That would be a huge mistake.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:09 am | Permalink

      Agree. Trade talks with USA are a useful lever in trade talks with the EU. The threat of “no deal” with the EU (such as it is) is surely the same as the threat of “no deal” with the rest of the world including USA (although of course we’ve been trading happily with them on a “no deal” basis for decades).

      UK is already a leading country in reforestation, but of course we get no credit for the fact, just complaints we haven’t done more from the middle-class eco whiners.

      • NickC
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

        Roy G, I am not convinced that the universal type trade deals (the EU, TTIP, UK-USA, etc) are worth having. Sure, side deals (mutual recognition of professional qualifications, driving licences, insurance oversight, etc) may be beneficial because life can be simpler with them. But the type of trade deal of which the EU is an example is an open invitation to bureaucratic complexity, red tape, and loss of independence, for no real gain.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      It seems Dom Cummings wants to pick technology winners using tax payers money. Much of it would doubtless by extracted by people, most of whom would have invested their own money far better and far more efficiently had it been left with them.

      So just leave the money with the companies with good R&D tax breaks and lower CT taxes, and get the red tape out of the way to give them more time too – it is so much more efficient that way. Probably at least 10 times as efficient.

      Governments generally “invest” in totally idiotic things and do it very inefficiently too. Thinks like millions of worthless degrees for £50K of soft debt, HS2, subsidies for renewable energy and other lunacies ….. They cannot even organise a decent IT project for the NHS or similar. Google The UK’s worst public sector IT disasters! Or read “The Blunders of Our Governments” which needs updating with all the many new ones!

      All but a handful voted for the Climate Change act and the Transport Minister seems to think electric cars are “zero emission”. One would not want any of the current MPs (other than perhaps about 10 of them) making any decisions at all about technology investment.

      Most MPs have virtually no understanding of business, physics, science, IT, energy systems, engineering or indeed economics.

    • Tory in Cumbria
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      It would be nonsensical to place the US ahead of the EU, we do many more times trade with the EU than the US and because of geography we always will. Baker is making a silly suggestion which he knows will not be followed, so when Brexit’s full calamity unfolds he will say “well, the government didn’t take my advice, it’s not my fault”. Watch carefully for all these Brexiters trying to hide from responsibility

      • Richard1
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:00 am | Permalink

        about 2x in fact. and the trade with the US is rising faster, despite the absence of any FTA. the point Baker makes – which is a very good one & is rarely made – is the EU, unlike any other WTO member or trading bloc, demands regulatory harmonisation (at least from European countries) as the price of free trade. thats because – as eurosceptics have long pointed our, but (UK) EU-philes have denied or played down – the EU is primarily a political project.

      • libertarian
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:21 am | Permalink

        Dear Tory in Cumbria

        Please dont post until you know what you are talking about theres a good chap.

        The USA is our BIGGEST market and always has been . 86% of all our business is SERVICES, geography is of no benefit, whereas, language, culture and shared systems are.

        I despair of remainers without the remotest clue about business and trade pontificating about business and trade

      • NickC
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

        TiC, Rubbish. The latest Pink Book figures show that c59% of UK exports go the rest of the world (c41% of exports to the EU). That makes the RoW far more important than the EU despite it being, by definition, geographically further away. Of course the vast majority of UK GDP (c70%) derives from our own home market. And I have not noticed Remains taking responsibility for their provenly fake forecasts.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

        Figures please

        Zorro

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

        Nonsense physical proximity is less and less important. Data and information can be sent round the world in seconds. Light goods can be flown from Hong Kong or LA to say London or Manchester often more quickly than from a remote bit of Scotland to a remote bit of Cornwall.

        Only for heavy & cheap bulk goods is this much of an issue.

  3. Cheshire Girl
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 5:56 am | Permalink

    I agree, but what have Conservative Governments been doing over the past ten years or so? They have let in many thousands of immigrants from outside the EU, so what is going to change when we leave the EU at the end of this month?

    There have been plenty of promises made, but we shall see…….

    • Shirley
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:42 am | Permalink

      +1

    • jerry
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      @Cheshire Girl; “so what is going to change”

      That’s the point, this is all political smoke and mirrors, nothing will change, note how our host used the term “low paid work”, when the real problem is the need for certain skills [1] -and yes some skilled work is (relatively) low paid, and the majority of “legal immigration from the EU27 is already pre-arranged, if informally, with a known job to fill!

      [1] which the points based system will allow, and remember, Australia with their points based system allow far more immigration than the UK has now, even with EU free movement

      • NickC
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

        Jerry, I suggest that the difference in allowable immigration between the UK and Australia is because Australia has a population density of 3.3/sqkm, whereas UK has 274/sqkm, and England 430/sqkm (Statista).

        That is the fundamental point: the UK, and England in particular, is overpopulated. That is why net immigration must be zero.

        • jerry
          Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

          @NickC; Of course Australia has a much lower population density given the countries total land area but much of it is unpopulated and quite frankly probably unpalatable. Thus Australia actually has a very high population density (something like 67% of total population) in their metropolitan areas.

          But that wasn’t really my point, I was trying to show how a points based system actually allow, and indeed encourages, needed immigration. There will be no magic-wand being waved post Brexit, just perhaps a different demographic of people applying…

    • Fred H
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      I think you meant to write ‘many hundreds of thousands’ FACT.

  4. Ian Wragg
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 6:31 am | Permalink

    What’s the point in having an immigration policy when the Navy andCoast Guard are providing a taxi service for all and sundry from Europe.

    • Shirley
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      +1

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:54 am | Permalink

      Most clandestine migrants simply land normally at airports on visas, and then never return, having disappeared into the crowd.

      The proportion entering like this is small by comparison.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

        Martin,

        You clearly know little about immigration control. I suggest that you look up the definition of a ‘clandestine migrant’. They do not ‘land normally at airports on visas and then never return’. People who have landed lawfully on visas and never return are overstayers. Their identity can be established if encountered by fingerprint verification and they can be removed.

        Clandestine migrants arrive clandestinely (is that clear enough?) with no valid papers by unlawful means. They are illegal entrants in law.

        You cannot say ‘most’ about anything as you have no access to the numbers!

        Zorro

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted January 14, 2020 at 8:09 am | Permalink

          You can choose your definition, there is no formal one.

          Anyone who cannot be traced by the authorities, however they came to that position can reasonably be called clandestine.

          Overstayers fall into that category too, once they have disappeared into the cash economy and various supportive communities.

          Has the UK started counting people in and then out again yet? It did not used to, so we have no idea how many there might be.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted January 14, 2020 at 8:26 am | Permalink

          According the Full Fact there are estimated to be of the order of half a million such people.

          David Davis claims that the number dwarfs those sneaking in.

          Their methods are explained here:

          https://fullfact.org/immigration/how-many-people-overstay-visas/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMImcjuytSC5wIVTbTtCh3hOgYIEAMYAiAAEgI0EvD_BwE

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      Much truth in that, and as they are very rarely ever returned (regardless of the merits of their claims) it (and they) act as a huge draw to encourage more and more to risk their lives and try their luck too.

      • Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:39 am | Permalink

        And like all your comments, no solution. Just complaining. Everything/every body is useless, inefficient, got wrong degrees, too much red tape but no specifics ever quoted.

        Thank goodness you never worked for me.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted January 14, 2020 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

          The solution is obvious make it clear that if they get to the UK then (unless by an approved application method) they would not be allowed to stay then they would not try to come.

    • Wil Pretty
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

      The migrants are coming from the EU. They should be returned there.

    • Stred
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:50 am | Permalink

      As instructed by the UN treaty signed on the quiet by our recent worst prime minister in living history, without debate. We agreed to assist migration and treat economic migrants as refugees from poverty.

      • APL
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

        Stred: “.. worst prime minister in living history …”

        Sorry, Stred, you’re going to have to be more specific.

        There’s been so many to choose from, and that’s just the last ten years.

    • Andy
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:58 am | Permalink

      Most of those rescued in the Channel are from Iran and Iraq and Afghanistan and Syria. None of which are in Europe.

      And the have risked their lives in the most shocking ways to try to make their lives better. Such brave souls are more than welcome in my country. They are a significant improvement on many of the natives.

      • Richard1
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:57 am | Permalink

        a bit odd they don’t want to stay in the EU don’t you think since its so great there and so awful here? how can that be?!

      • Ian Wragg
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:11 am | Permalink

        Last time I looked, France was still in Europe

      • libertarian
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:24 am | Permalink

        Andy thinks they sailed to the UK in a rubber dinghy from Iraq

        Anyway there was a load more on the hardshoulder of the M20 this morning, let me have your address and I’ll send them over

      • agricola
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:31 am | Permalink

        Just for once Andy I agree with you. having crossed the channel many times by yacht I can confirm that it is no place for amateurs or the rubber yacht tenders they use. Their journeys are an affirmation of the UK as the most desirable destination in Europe.

      • Robert mcdonald
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:32 am | Permalink

        So none of these brave souls have the wit or willpower to actually improve the society in which they were born and bred ? Instead they bribe criminals to create their business in riskfull relocations to a place they can live off others and then encourage more to risk their lives. I don’t want see how such selfish people are an improvement on our natives.

      • Oggy
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

        You pay for them then.

      • Narrow Shoulders
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

        Risking their lives does not stop them being law breakers.

        I am fed up with the “plucky” tag that these people enjoy.

        Getting out of bed every morning to go and do a job I despise so that I can pay for others who can’t be bothered to get out of bed through my taxes is “plucky”. Trying to get into another country without being invited is illegal.

      • Pud
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

        The people rescued from the Channel have either rowed all the way from Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan or Syria or they are illegal immigrants because refugees should claim asylum in the first safe country they reach.
        If the UK took a tougher line and deported the illegals then lives would be saved because pointless Channel crossings would not be attempted.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

        I thought they escaping from France.

      • Old Albion
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

        As soon as they step onto European soil they are safe. So why risk their lives illegally crossing the English channel? There must be some attraction.
        You naivety is astonishing.

      • Glenn Vaughan
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

        “Such brave souls are more than welcome in my country” Andy

        Presumably that “country” is Fantasy Island judging from your postings and is therefore also devoid of the pensioners you so evidently despise.

      • NickC
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

        Andy, Don’t you find it ironic that they are desperate to escape from your EU empire, given you think it’s so wonderful? I do.

        • Andy
          Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:01 pm | Permalink

          I think if you are fleeing Iraq or Syria, if your home town has been destroyed or your family has been murdered that you will try to reclaim your life as much as possible. Ending up in refugee camp – in a tent for a decade, 500 yards to the nearest loo, no jobs, only ever rice to eat – that is no life. Of course people don’t want that.

          So why do they come here? Perhaps they speak a bit of English but no Dutch or German. That might help. Maybe the have family or friends here and none in France. These are mostly desperate people who just want to get on with life and be left alone. The do not come here for the weather or the benefits or to interact with any of you. They come – risking their lives in dinghys – because the alternative for them is worse.

          Genuinely I find most of you lacking in even basic levels of humanity.

          • Fred H
            Posted January 14, 2020 at 8:01 am | Permalink

            startlingly naive…or is it just stupidity?
            ‘the alternative for them is worse. ‘.

            Well you said it – a rather long walk to get away from the EU.

          • Anonymous
            Posted January 14, 2020 at 8:39 am | Permalink

            You do like to dehumanise us.

          • NickC
            Posted January 14, 2020 at 11:50 am | Permalink

            Andy, So you’re saying they’ll risk their lives across the Channel simply because they won’t learn to speak German?

            And that there are no compatriots of theirs in Germany, Italy and France? I think you’ll find you’re wrong if you bother to keep up with the news about immigrants in Germany etc.

            You base your virtue signalling on falsehoods. That is what I have no compassion for.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

        Did they not cross a plethora of EU countries on their way, all of whom are safe countries in law?

        Zorro

      • jerry
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

        @Andy; “Such brave souls are more than welcome in my country. “

        You live in Italy, or perhaps Greece? Do find a clue!

        The UN Charter that deals with refugees and asylum states that a refugee should apply for such status in the first safe country they reach. For those seeking safety from the troubled middle east and eastern side of North Africa that is most likely Italy or Greece. The n of course, once they have applied and gained such status they are free to move around the EU28, but why would they need to use inflatables or hide in fridge trailers, or cling to the under side of HGV and even Euro tunnel trains, if holding EU residency documents, surely they would simply buy a one way ticket on a no-frills airline or cross channel ferry…

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

        No they aren’t. They are coming from France/Belgium/Netherlands and should be returned there – unless you think they have sailed here from Iraq ? . Obviously your message that the majority in the UK are elderly racists hasn’t got through to them.

      • Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

        You may well be right this time, Andy, especially if we use your word ”natives” in the true sense.
        I’m from a mixed race family- and it’s true that my own family’s ”natives” are among the most patriotic and committed of any I could wish to meet, and who, without exception, voted in favour of Brexit.
        Those unfortunates who risk their lives to get here, though they should indeed be sent back to the ”safe country” from whence they came. should be commended for their discernment.

    • jerry
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:03 am | Permalink

      @Ian Wragg; A “taxi service” either back to France or to the UK and detention -pending repatriation – what would you suggest Ian, leave people to drown, after being swamped by a passing ship?…

      • Narrow Shoulders
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

        Them’s the risks Jerry – they should accept them or not. Preferably not as they are illegally trying to get here.

      • Oggy
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

        They are neither put in detention or repatriated, once questioned by the Border force, they will be released and many will disappear.
        Many destroy their documents before arriving making it difficult to repatriate them. This then begs the question if they are genuinely seeking refuge why destroy their papers, one can only assume they are not genuine refugees but illegal migrants.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      Quite – anyone picked up in the sea should be deposited back on the nearest beach away from the UK.

      They are already displaced and went in to the sea from the Schengen area so it is the EU’s problem not ours

    • GilesB
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

      Set up a camp for them in the Falklands while their ‘applications’ are being processed

  5. agricola
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Migrants don’t just come from the EU, give or take, 950% come from elswhere. Largely thanks to Blairs policy of looking for more people to vote Labour. In London he achieved it. Half the population were not born in the UK and London is now a socialist metropolitan enclave. This only takes account of the legitimate population of London.

    That we need a number of highly skilled individuals in our workforce now, the NHS comes to mind, we need to import them. Many less skilled, the demands of agriculture come to mind, we need to import but only on seasonal contracts.

    Those we import to solve problems also create problems for our catchup infrastructure like housing. There are three longterm answers. We train more of our existing population to fill skilled jobs and stop charging them for that training. We make it harder for people to make a career out of avoiding work. We legislate to make procreation even more expensive than it already is with the ultimate intention of reducing the overall population figure to around 40 million. We then find we have the housing we need without recourse to building on green belt or flood plains.

    • agricola
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:00 am | Permalink

      Sorry a digit problem, the 9 crept in, it should read 50%.

    • forthurst
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      Nigel Farage promoted the points based immigration system because he thought it would limit immigration; the Tories have adopted it because they know that it will do the opposite. As we are not an immigrant country, having been settled for milenia, we don’t need an immigration system at all and certainly not one that allows aliens to ‘qualify’ to come here.

      There was an interesting article in the Times yesterday about the schools which were sending the most students to Oxbridge. It was noticeable that Singaporean schools were very well represented. What is interesting is that Singapore adopted our secondary examination system and then improved it; whereas we decided it did not pass enough children and it also ‘discriminated’ against girls when it came to numerate science and maths, so we degraded our system instead to make it ‘fairer’. Is it surprising that Singaporeans are at an advantage when applying to enter our best universities against the indigenous population for whose benefit these institutions were created? I’m sick of hearing about how we need an infusion of this or that skill from abroad whilst places at our best universities are given to foreigners and our children are hamstrung by a third rate examination system which does not extend the most academic children to prepare them properly for the tertiary system.

    • jerry
      Posted January 14, 2020 at 7:39 am | Permalink

      @agricola; “Many less skilled, the demands of agriculture come to mind, we need to import but only on seasonal contracts.”

      The last time I checked agriculture was a 24/7/365 industry, chickens do not stop laying in the winter, animals still need managing, some crops are even harvested during the winter, whilst the land still needs to be prepared, then of course there are certain types of food processing which now relies on a migrant labour force because very few British born and breed choose to work in such industries.

      “We make it harder for people to make a career out of avoiding work.”

      Do not think people can be forced to do work! The State might well be able to force a UC claimant to attend a place of work but no one can force them to actually work once there or, worse still, do the work correctly.

      “We legislate to make procreation even more expensive than it already is with the ultimate intention of reducing the overall population figure to around 40 million.”

      Pardon, one of the reasons we need immigrant labour is because the UK’s birth rate has been falling, if migrant labour is to be avoided we need to do two things, one can be done quickly, the other will take at least 16 years to show benefit; 1/. radically change our education system to discourage post compulsory education Degree courses other than for the (very) brightest of students whilst spending more time teaching ‘trades’ rather than being obsessed with academia, 2/. encourage a baby-boom the likes of which has not been seen since the 1950s.

      As for housing, especially in the metropolitan areas surrounded by your beloved green belts, perhaps we should look to places such as New York or Singapore. I know we tried that (building high) in the 1060s, this time though we need to build quality, not just quantity having made it a political numbers game.

  6. eeyore
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    Sir John makes a strong point about the futility of pumping to drain low-lying areas. If homes must be built on flood plains put them on stilts with parking underneath.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:15 am | Permalink

      eeyore – -no such thing as ‘must be built on flood plains’ BAN IT.

      A hotel not too far from us was built on ‘stilts’ but the carpark floods – cars written off and tractors to remove them….

    • Merchant of Doom
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

      Clearly the answer is not having children. When children get to be teenagers, anyone can see we are doomed

  7. agricola
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    A really radical solution. Encourage the retired to move to Spain and Greece where property prices are markedly lower than in most of the UK. The climate is better for the elderly, and the atmosphere suffers less particulate. The cost of living is lower too. The Dutch already do it with excellent accommodation ,medical services, et al,we could at much lower cost to the nation than continuing to look after them inadequately in the UK. All we need to do is sort out a sensible relationship with the EU and start thinking outside the box. The Caribean is also a potential destination for such a scheme.

  8. William Pentelow
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:22 am | Permalink

    In Northamptonshire building is totally out of control.
    The wildlife as been decimated .
    This is not a responsible program and although i vote Tory, the Tories are to blame.
    Immigration is destroying our country faster than anyone anticipated, it must be stopped or England as we know it is coming to an end.

  9. APL
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    JR: “We need green gaps between settlements, protection of woodland and good farmland, and maintenance of flood plain.”

    ‘Green gaps’. That’s what the green belt has been reduced to.

    Anyway, why? Just concrete over the lot. We don’t need farmland, we can buy all our food from abroad. And definitely, definitely, build like crazy all over the flood plains.

    So, business in future, same as the last sixty years. No change.

  10. Old Albion
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    Some of us have been pointing out the problems caused by uncontrolled immigration, for twenty years.
    We were called racists for doing so.

  11. Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    We don’t actually need any more people, but, assuming that we do, why not just issue work permits and have no immigration?
    At a bare minimum, all immigrants should be literate in their own languages.
    The real issue is the continuance of our western, Christian-based civilisation about which your government could not care less.

  12. Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    I was told never to presume in business. I presume they do not set numbers so cannot be accused of missing them, having lost control during the May tenure. What worries me is that you see the need to make the points you do, flood plains, more trees etc would seem obvious to the impartial observer. There also seems to be no traffic modelling so ar peak times everything clogs up even more.

    Why is all this not factored in before planning approval is given?

    A couple of days ago you mentioned an enquiry into the IR 35 mess. Why weren’t all these problems identified in the ‘brainstorming’/modelling that should have preceded the announcement?

    Re your announcement about local fire services. Why didn’t they bring their financial proposals within the 2% budget increase instead of looking to dump the extra cost on the local public.

    Seemingly three examples in three days of inefficiency/incompetence /arrogance/naivety – who knows but all where the tax payer has no choice but to suffer/pay.

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

      Large approved building programme under the current local plan.

      I always wonder about the local plan with fire and police service if all these new homes are being built and rates being paid don’t the fire and police local precept increase automatically through the charge on the rates, do police and fire officer numbers rise in line with new residents? Are there a number of personnel per number of residents?

      When two large new estates were proposed near to our estate built 30 years ago, I knew this land was designated for homes from 30 years ago so saw little to complain about but went along to resident meetings to read other residents concerns. The main concern was the road infrastructure with problem roads now to get out on to the main carriageways already been congested. NOTHING WAS DONE and sure enough all the residents concerns came into being, the biggest new estate had a nice new roundabout built which just makes turning right out of the other two estates impossible and dangerous, the nearby narrow lane junction which brings workers in and out of that side of town wasn’t addressed and now that is dangerous to turn right out of and delays people turning left because it isn’t big enough for two cars side by side and school buses are allowed to use it causing big delays at rush hour because they can’t fit through two cars abreast.

      As for trees; I like trees, I planted conifers and trees and keep them a reasonable height and trimmed every year, but the builders planted Horse Chestnut and Sycamore trees in most residents gardens, some people look after these others don’t and over 30 years have become giants casting shadows and removing light, roots lifting tarmac pavements and roads, the leaves every autumn blocking drains and making pavements slippery. They could have planted magnolia trees, olive or fruit trees and other slow-growing trees that don’t reach such towers. So be careful what you wish for John.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 15, 2020 at 8:38 am | Permalink

        ugh – – sycamores should be thought of as weeds.

  13. Mark B
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    We also need to plant more trees . . .

    I’ll come back to that comment later.

    According to Migration Watch, the planned proposals will not bring MASS IMMIGRATION down.

    EU Immigration was falling and has not been as high as non-EU immigration. The dishonest thing here is, whist the UK government can do little to stem EU-immigration, it could always do something about the much higher non-EU immigration.

    The Conservative government is wise not to put figures on the number of people allowed to enter the UK. It has consistently failed to meet its targets and, I argue , will fail again.

    With regards to the numbers of immigrants seeking UK citizenship, my I enquire if that too is to be cut ?

    Finally the trees ! Whist it is good to plant more trees, may I enquire where ? If you are building houses, roads, presumably new schools, hospitals retail, reservoirs, power stations etc, you are not going to have much space for them. This assumes that you have actually planned for this and are not going to rely on smart meters to force people to reduce consumption ?

    • NickC
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

      Mark B, Well said. Migration could be cut to net zero. But won’t be. The LibLabCon will carry on importing millions more per decade, for reasons they can’t (or won’t) explain. One of (the many) advantages of Brexit is the politicians will no longer be able to hide behind the EU as the culprit when they are to blame.

  14. Stred
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    In the past it was impossible to gain planning permission for housing in the countryside, except for strictly agricultural use. I passed a whole estate in the between Lewes and Ukfield and in N. Essex there is a new street of large new houses completely away from villages. Those with influence on councils must be using the pressure from central government to increase the rate of housebuilding from the pathetic 114k towards the average 250k net immigration.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:22 am | Permalink

      Examples – Blenheim and a village called North Leigh – Oxfordshire.
      Now surrounded by housing developments mostly unsold, unaffordable for current residents. What was green fields, social amenities, grazing, crops etc concreted over.
      And of course those that sell will be bought by commuters adding even more congestion to the ancient A40 traffic jam towards Oxford. The only station that is one stop from Oxford has a full carpark from early morning, nowhere else to park. Poor bus service, very few short coaches trains….what on earth do the planners think they are doing?

  15. SM
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    Re immigration:

    a) an elderly and very sick friend has, over the past month, been treated desperately badly by the NHS, inflicting unwarranted extra physical suffering on her and incurring major expense for the system. Part of is was caused by recurring bad management, part of it – according to the 4 consultants eventually involved – because of shortage of staff.

    b) a S African friend, fully qualified and experienced in medical rehabilitation, is attempting to work in the UK. She is paying £1000’s and has been kept waiting for a decision for many months. No decision has yet been made.

    Perhaps someone in Government ought to pull their finger out.

  16. Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:44 am | Permalink

    Should be achievable.

    Skills and real resources are the only constraint the monopoly issuer of the £ has.

    We identify what needs done have a look at what skills we have then

    a) Train our own to fill the skill gaps

    b) On rare occasions bring in skills we do not have

    Then the most lower skilled people who voted for Brexit are protected. Immigration has stopped for them.

    Only highly skilled jobs is where the competition will be until we train our own.

  17. Sharon Jagger
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    Off topic – sorry!

    With our departure from the EU being imminent, there seems to be a feeling that all will done and dusted. There is discussion about the trade deal and the EU continuing to threaten us and being b*oody difficult, but I am concerned. I am concerned that Boris might cave, but my other bigger concern was triggered by the article in The Times by Lord Pannick. In it he reminds us that the WAB puts EU law into British law for the time being.

    Already we’ve had Teresa Villiers stating that we won’t allow chlorinated chicken and hormone beef into our country – because it’s against EU law!

    With the media potentially going quiet on Brexit after the 31st January, it is this sort of situation where only the Supreme and the Scottish High Court being able to over-rule the laws (and we know how both these view things) are left ‘in charge’ of the gradual removal of EU law from our statute books that I see troubles ahead.

    The likes of Gina Miller et al will ensure that many of the EU laws will remain, I’ve no doubt.

    This is what people mean when they say they don’t wholly trust Boris. There is so much that will potentially remain… EU dominant!

    Please can you reassure people that won’t be the case?

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

      Yet at the same time chlorinated Salad Produce is a must so the Vegans don’t get poisoned. Everyone else is left a risk if they handle raw chicken at any time, one of our most contaminated meats.

      Health & Safety warning chicken is naturally contaminated, never wash it in water.
      Always wash and disinfecting your hands before and after touching. It is said that any washing water should be at 165 degrees C to kill the bugs

      Chlorinated Chicken is not permitted in the EU as the quality of the abattoirs in the EU is such they cannot be trusteed. That is the only reason.

  18. Chris Dark
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    There is no housing crisis. There is an immigration crisis. Get this under proper control and stop allowing all and sundry to come here, especially on dinghies and in trucks. We cannot house and feed the world….why should we? I agree we need many open spaces, countryside, for well-being, leisure, rest and positive mental health. North Somerset is about to consider building on green belt, we will have none of it left in these isles if other councils follow suit.

  19. Irene
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    It would be hard to argue that the huge number of houses built in the Wokingham area has any connection whatsoever with immigration and/or the need to house migrants. The majority of the homes built in the Wokingham area – over many years now – are not affordable, and they are not destined to be affordable either. Even locals who have lived and worked in the area for many years find them unaffordable. Every new estate built has crucified the area.

    The infrastructure in the Wokingham area has fallen far behind, leaving residents struggling, and certainly not meeting the needs of old or new residents. Locals have had to watch as trees are demolished all round, road systems clogged to bursting, with nobody listening to their outrage.

    Who will do the low paid work?

    Where was the Conservative Government in all of this for the last decade? It’s nothing to do with migration. Just lack of care.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:25 am | Permalink

      exactly …..we are 50 year residents and watched the steamrolled building progress in horror.

    • Iain Moore
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:41 am | Permalink

      It has everything to do wit immigration , you cannot add millions of people to our population and it not having a serious effect.

  20. dixie
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    With the illumination that Brexit has given on the behaviour, beliefs and attitudes of our political class and establishment , I have been exploring ideas and proposals from a number of people. One important guide has been the eloquent common sense of the philosopher Sir Roger Scruton so I was deeply saddened to hear this morning that he has passed away.

    Sir Roger Scruton R.I.P

    • Richard1
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:54 am | Permalink

      Indeed. Roger Scruton’s treatment by some lying leftist rat at the new statesman was disgraceful – but was of course what we should expect from such people.

      what was more disgraceful – because we shouldn’t expect it – is the way he was dropped like a hot potato by Mrs May and Mr Brokenshire, who as Conservatives should be pushing back against left-wing cancel culture.

      Sir Roger was a real voice of independent reason and a distinguished philosopher. Had he been left wing he would have been much more celebrated and recognised than he was in academic circles.

  21. Alan Joyce
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    Dear Mr. Redwood,

    On the 9th January 2020, your topic of the day was about ‘Contributions to this site’. You said that you were keen to make your task of moderating your blog easier.

    Since the article, I wish to point out that ‘Martin in Cardiff’ has contributed the following:

    January 9th: 7 posts
    January 10th: 18 posts
    January 11th: 13 posts
    January 12th: 6 posts

    If you really want to make your job easier, may I suggest that you limit contributions to 3 per day absolute maximum. 13 and 18 in a single day is simply ridiculous. Many of the posts fit your criteria as largely uninteresting, often repetitive and frequently aggressive. They are sometimes deliberately insulting.

    Reply It would slow me down to have to keep count of each contributors pieces

    • villaking
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:15 am | Permalink

      Alan Joyce – it is Lifelogic who posts the most and they are always repetitive and frequently aggressive (endless use of “traitor” to describe anyone who did not want an abrupt WTO exit from the EU, “green crap” used repeatedly to summarise his views on climate change and “piss down the drain” his oft repeated prose to describe his views on any public spending). MoC is at least one of a handful who represents a contrary view and does so without the same aggression. Sir John sometimes publishes my posts and sometimes does not (I don’t send many and they are never abusive) but it is refreshing that he is at least open to contributors who do not agree with him

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 14, 2020 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

        To me anyone who voted for the Benn act is a traitor and always will be. It tied the hand of the government in the negotiations with the EU and has clearly cost the UK tax payers a fortune. David Starkey is exactly right on this treachery.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:28 am | Permalink

      reply to reply – – – I did suggest a pad with the names of frequent contributors. incl me! A tick for each entry – delete the extras. Simple.

    • acorn
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:33 am | Permalink

      How does Martin score against Lifelogic? Or does the latters daily repetition of the same words and phrases not count?

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:47 am | Permalink

      Alan, you clearly have nothing better to do with your time than to trawl through John’s threads, counting my posts.

      You have my sincere commiserations.

      • Alan Joyce
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

        Dear Mr. Redwood,

        @Martin in Cardiff.

        But at least I don’t have the time to write to Mr. Redwood 18 times a day!

      • NickC
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

        Martin, If Alan had not counted your posts, and instead said you post “a lot” you would have sneered at him for not having the figures. At least Lifelogic attacks policies, whereas you and especially Andy frequently attack Leave voters. Indeed the ad hominems against Leave voters has been the defining characteristic of Remain.

    • Mark B
      Posted January 15, 2020 at 9:16 am | Permalink

      Reply to reply

      Then hold his posts in moderation. I think it is not just the number of posts that he makes but, the replies to them. I have taken to whenever he or any of the others like him reply to my posts, I never read or reply to them I also refuse to read their posts or any of the replies to them. You will be amazed at the amount of time reading is saved.

  22. RAF
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    We need green gaps between settlements, protection of woodland and good farmland, and maintenance of flood plain.

    Currently the above exists between my home town and adjacent urban areas. Sadly the County Council, and three district councils have a plan for three ‘Garden Communities’ – a misnomer if current building density is maintained – that will erode the current gaps with the provision of tens of thousands of homes.
    Combined, these ‘Communities’ represent the addition, population wise, of a small to medium sized town. Where are the people to purchase these homes to come from and where will they find employment are reasonable questions to ask. London at 50 miles away is the simple answer but with already overloaded roads and railways another problem will be added to the what already exists.
    Strategic planning appears to be a lost art, starting at the very top with the political promotion of mass immigration without the provision of the infrastructure to cope. The Country is attempting to play catch-up with no end in sight and the current problems will worsen if little or no effort to reduce the incoming numbers is made.

  23. Iain Moore
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    At some point the Conservatives are going to have to raise the issue of population sustainability , why they haven’t upto now I don’t know, I have often thought they haven’t because they don’t want to put the left and greens in a difficult position, their unwillingness to be nasty to them.

    If the Conservatives did raise population sustainability then the left wouldn’t know which way to turn, for to deny the issue would be to recant their religious belief in global warming as all demand and consumption comes back to population. Unfortunately the Conservatives don’t, instead they make it very easy for the left, so talk about immigration, which will get the stock response from the left , greens and all the rest of them as being racist, with the result the Conservatives retreat from any mention about restricting immigration, and we get more years of unrestrained population growth, more concreting over our diminishing countryside, more shortage of housing, more restrictions on public services, more congestion on our roads and rail, and more stress on our environment.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:48 am | Permalink

      Tis strange that the rise in Global Warming is in line with population growth.

  24. Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    Ps. Off topic. Today we mourn the death of Roger Scruton. An intellectual giant laid low by left wing smears supported by the pygmies in this government. Fortunately the lies were exposed and his reputation reinstated.

    We know who the knee jerk Tory politicians are and they should hang their heads in shame. They won’t of course because they are incapable of it.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

      Character assassination is a terrible and pernicious form of abuse and should be recognised as such. ( Yet still the commies destroy lives).
      Boris has said EXACTLY the right thing re Mr Scruton calling him the “greatest modern conservative thinker” and saying that he had the guts to say what he thought and said it beautifully.

  25. Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    I deny a housing shortage.

    There is a housing misallocation, geographically (perhaps the expense of London living should not be supported by ‘London allowances?) and demographically (older people rattling around in houses that they are attached to emotionally but that are over-large and expensive for them to maintain.)

    And then there is the contentious issue of undocumented inward migration – a million souls? https://www.migrationwatchuk.org/key-topics/illegal-immigration

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      The ‘Housing Banks’ owned by the large commercial builders far outstrips the need for the next decade.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

      Indeed, I wonder if anyone has done the exercise of calculating % increase of – current EU country members’ populations today versus 20 years ago, compared to % increase of – current London & S East population today compared to 20 years ago.

      That would be a good indicator as to whether we are being lumbered with a greater or lesser strain on infrastructure than average EU strain.

      Additionally, % change in average infrastructure spend across the EU compared with the S East UK over that period would show what’s been done about it, and go some way to explaining our demand to Leave.

  26. Alan Jutson
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    Agree Wokingham has been overloaded with housing during the last 20 years, with new estates at too higher density, roads too narrow, car parking too little on each plot, so the narrow roads get clogged and pavements parked on.
    Meanwhile the huge increase in the local population has caused congestion both on the roads and infrastructure in general.
    Houses were planned and built before any new roads were installed (the complete opposite to abroad), old roads do not seem to have any maintenance programme and so are breaking up under the volume of traffic, not helped by the whole host of emergency repairs being put in place all over the borough, again causing chaos.
    4 way traffic lights installed at many junctions slows traffic to a crawl, even late at night when the roads could flow.
    The existing planning gained for another 836 new houses a year for the next 10 years is already too much, locally we need to completely stop and rethink, are we Urban or Rural ?

    I see the large newly constructed Tesla charging centre for electric cars (built on a floodplain area) was underwater for a week a couple of weeks ago, just about sums up the local thoughts of Planning.
    No wonder the Conservative Council lost 10 seats at the last local elections given their absolute arrogance and management of the borough for the last decade..

    • Fred H
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:30 am | Permalink

      and the Hatch Farm development will get a school when it is all finished, not before…

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:42 am | Permalink

      You could also reason the loss of seats was due to the Conservative Party is turning into the spot vacated by the Looney left Liberals and have forgotten what it means to be a Conservative. If we are to have left leaning ‘Woke’ councils we might as well vote for the real thing.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

      Yes the charging points at Winnersh are in a stupid place- regularly flooded. It’s as though T May were involved in that decision, slightly out of area! Can somebody explain why?

      Yes, roads are being damaged through heavy construction traffic throughout the S East, leading to large potholes and cracks which wouldn’t have been acceptable in the past. Yes, immigration is to blame ultimately.

      • Ian@Barkham
        Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

        I am sure I remember, the local planners and developers at Hatch Farm had assured Sir John that they had engineered the flooding situation out of the area. It was part of the condition of the development going ahead.

        So it wasn’t expected to happen again at the Sindersham Mill area and for that matter at the Shocase cinema either. As you note all underwater for week.

        While it hasn’t happened on the estate itself, the development has aggravated the surrounding area. It is called a flood plain for a reason.

        This of course is the situation now, without having had any significant rain.

        The last decade has seen Wokingham Council deteriorate to a left wing club on an ego trip.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

      The objective behind the backwards implementation of 4 way traffic lights is to increase substantially the air pollution in the areas thus enabling the overall premise that car users must use cycles on pedestrian footpaths.

      A reverse phycology. It is to encourage anyone that has a Conservative bone in their body to leave the area so the looney left can consolidate their position and stronghold.

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted January 14, 2020 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      Some interesting comments from a local meeting last night where some councillors were present.

      The new LED Lights which have been at the heart of the widespread street light replacement scheme, have a more narrow spread of light when compared to the old sodium lights they replaced, thus we now get more shadow than previously, and less light on the road and footpaths, they also give out less light because many of them are controlled by dimmer switches which are on a low setting, they could give out more light, but the Council appear to be satisfied with the settings as they are.

      No wonder it is proving difficult to pick out pedestrians on paths at night on some roads given the above, and the fact that most people wear dark clothes in the winter.

      No problem with LED lighting itself, it just needs a wider light spread lamp to be fitted, and the controls turned up !!!

      Will that happen ?

      Guess not !

      • Ian@Barkham
        Posted January 14, 2020 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

        In part it is also the colour. White light has always been wrong for night sight and vision. It is also the reason flight decks and ships use red. Change the colour, or have the colour/brightness at a maximum 2800K not the 4500K, then the shadowing diminishes.

        Sodium lights weren’t amber by accident.

        Then again this is Wokingham council the white they use is cheaper than all the alternatives. This modern interpretation of a Council believes cheap is the same as good value for money

        Wokingham used to be efficient and effective on delivering for community needs. They also used to be able to do all that from one of least expensive rates in the country.

        Now it is left inclined former shadow of a proper Conservative Council

  27. Everhopeful
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    Good news ( if it actually happens)…about 20 years too late.
    How are we meant to keep going with no Drs appts and totally clogged roads?
    Surely we need some quality of life?
    I saw a headline suggesting new Lords attack on Brexit…can’t even be bothered to investigate.

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

      Lots of clogged roads are to do with endless weeks of roadworks rather than general commutes. Councils seem to give three weeks to what should be a one week job, for the first couple of days you see no-one working on the section, nothing happening whilst the road remains coned through rush hour home and nothing happening all weekend, it’s just easier to make 30 minute commutes one hour for everyone.

      What we should be doing is really investigating unemployment and comparing it to available low skilled work, retraining if necessary.

  28. Gareth Warren
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    I welcome these changes, if properly implemented then a reduction in low paid immigration will produce a higher level of pay for those living here. More expensive take aways are examples of the negative consequence, but overall it should produce a better standard of life for all.

    We are massively overpopulated as a country, without immigration natural birth rates would not support anywhere near current population levels. Too many people justify immigration by saying we need it for enough people like care workers, what they really want though are wages so low that a coffee shop can compete for workers easily.

    We need to get off this current race to the bottom, more trees would be great too.

  29. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Housing in the south of the country is out of control. Sussex is terrible. New homes, packed together going in everywhere. No improvement in hospitals, GP’s, school places, dentists or road improvements. The place is unrecognisable from when I resided there only 20 years ago. There is no way I would want to go back now.

    We must find ways to improve other areas in the country where there is more room but at the moment there are not the job opportunities for people to want to move.

    I await with baited breath to see what this government will achieve regarding immigration. So far their track record isn’t very good. Still picking up and letting in illegal immigrants finding their way here from France and other European countries where they are already safe. Most people I speak to have had enough of it.

  30. RichardP
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    Isn’t it time the Government did something about the Localism Act. It completely undermines sensible planning controls and local democracy. There really isn’t any point in voting at local elections.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:43 am | Permalink

      Agreed

  31. bigneil(newercomp)
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    Have just read elsewhere that Germany had over 110k Asylum applications last year. Over 2000 a week. I assume theirs will be the same as we get here in the UK. Mainly young males, all with a family back home waiting to bring them all over here to benefit from our taxes. Absolute total and utter madness. Send them back to change their own country – not wave them in here to destroy Europe.

  32. Ian @Barkham
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    There does seem an irony that most of what we hear about is those trying to escape from Europe and the EU by taking their lives in their hands to cross the channel.

  33. BJC
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    In my experience, Planners don’t apply any degree of common sense and look at each development in isolation so they can ignore the cummulative impact on an area. In my already built up area with many terraced properties already granted permission for conversion to flats, a developer is now attempting to drop 500 rental flats, office and retail space and high dependency elderly accommodation and just 140 parking spaces. It’s situated within a few minutes of a direct rail link to London just 1 hr away, so very attractive to those currently living/working there who would appreciate the lower rents, i.e. they’ll import residents not solve local housing issues. At least two more huge developments are in the pipeline just behind this development. Schools are full, GP provision is creaking and existing road/transport/parking is not included for improvement. Utterly bonkers.

  34. libertarian
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    Dear Andy, Newmania and Maggs

    6 months ago you were all telling us that we would see airbus leave and our car industry would go down the pan

    I told you that airbus would stay and it would be the German car industry that would suffer

    Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury – “Airbus is committed to the UK and to working with the new government on an ambitious industrial strategy. We see great potential to improve and expand our operations in the UK this year.”

    The huge order from American carrier Spirit Airlines, valued at £8 billion, is great news for the 6,000-strong workforce at Airbus’ Broughton plant in North Wales where the wings will be built

    Acceleration of the Tempest fighter jet programme is set to create 1,500 British jobs – Rolls-Royce, BAE, Leonardo & MBDA, the four founding partners, plan to more than double the project’s workforce from the current 1,000 to 2,500

    Quote

    ” Holger Zshaepitz Welt

    Germany is going through a car crisis , latest data shows that car manufacturing has collapsed to a multi-decade low, lower than 2008 GFC, due to new EU emissions rules, diesel restrictions and Brexit”

    The city still appears to be here too

    You must be feeling really silly now

    • Ian@Barkham
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

      Then again if you aim your comments at a brick wall, they will be understood better, unless it was left facing…

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 15, 2020 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

      That order puts considerable pressure on the Government for alignment with many aspects of European Union practice.

      Doesn’t it?

  35. Anonymous
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    Help to Move

    Not

    Help to Buy

    Incentivise single old people to move from superheated family homes !

    • ChrisS
      Posted January 14, 2020 at 8:46 am | Permalink

      Hate to disappoint you, Anon, but most of us “older people” are perfectly happy and want to stay put !

      My wife and I enjoy our 3,000sq ft home with it’s large, spacious rooms and even a Corbyn-style garden tax would make us even think of moving ! The fact that moving would be prohibitively expensive is completely irrelevant.

      While builders insist on providing the tiniest possible homes they have little or no change of attracting people to downsize. The idea that the highest possible number of bedrooms drives the price is crazy when all you end up with is bedrooms without even room for a wardrobe. What counts is living space.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 15, 2020 at 8:32 am | Permalink

        exactly. We spent 2 years looking to move in a wide circle into next counties! From a largish 4/5 bedroom with really large garden, we could manage with only 2 en-suite bedrooms, kitchen diner, conservatory, double garage etc.
        The only homes that could be considered were small roomed 4 beds again, mostly in family type estates. Given up while watching identikit homes thrown up on every bit of land for miles around us…No thanks.

      • Cheshire Girl
        Posted January 15, 2020 at 8:55 am | Permalink

        Chris.

        I agree. Why should older people have to give up their home, bought with years of hard work, just to get Governments out of the hole they have dug for themselves over the years.

  36. Posted January 13, 2020 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

    John,

    Roger Bootle’s piece in the Telegraph shows how hard it is going to be to move on from thinking we use the Euro. It is terrible and only concentrated on one side of the balance sheet.

    🙁

  37. BillM
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

    It would be a good move to stop all new residential building programmes until there has been a full appraisal of the actual needs in each respective area.
    As I gather from a local Councillor, the developers themselves, in the past, have been the prime movers of more home construction in this area and when challenged by the local Planning Office, they have approached the Department of the Environment et al in London, who then have over ruled our local council.
    I trust this malpractice will cease under the new Tory Government? Especially when no consideration is taken by the developers over the effects of more housing on our infrastructure. Our Roads, GP surgeries and schools for example.

    • DavidJ
      Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:31 pm | Permalink

      In some areas the local council members seem keener to support the developers rather than those they are supposed to represent. I wonder why?

  38. DaviJ
    Posted January 13, 2020 at 11:27 pm | Permalink

    We need to encourage more immigrants to go home. They are needed in their own countries.

    • Mark B
      Posted January 15, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

      This can be easily done. Stop building houses and let market forces do the rest.

  39. ChrisS
    Posted January 14, 2020 at 4:25 am | Permalink

    The unspoken truth over the last few years has been that the shortfall in housing has been almost entirely down to net immigration : the number of housing units built has been only a few thousand short of that required if we had a stable population.

    My wife and I come from Maidenhead but for the last 20 years we have lived in East Dorset. Here the council is allowing the building of many new homes yet there is nothing like enough new infrastructure to cope with the increase in population.

    The sites allowed to be built on are far from idea, lying in areas which already have heavy traffic problems and where there would be no way of improving the road system without demolishing existing homes ! Meanwhile, vast brown field areas adjacent to the A31 West or Ringwood are not being utilised. I’m sure this is being repeated everywhere where new arrivals want to live.

    The knock on effect on us, the British people of an additional 250,000 people arriving each year has been immense. It’s small wonder that voters want to see it reduced.

    Industry insists we need all these migrants to make the country successful and increase GDP but at what cost ? I strongly suspect that the overall effect of net migration is negative when one takes into account all of the costs, both financial and on the environment in which we live.

    With net immigration there is always a trade-off between financial cost and quality of life.
    Governments have not spent the money on the necessary infrastructure and as a result, our quality of life deteriorates, year by year.

    I believe there is clear synergy between migration and HS2, both of which big business is keen to promote. Neither is worth the expenditure UK taxpayers are being asked to fund.
    If big business wants these to continue, they should be the ones that pay the full cost.

  40. Feb 1 Man
    Posted January 14, 2020 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    The shortage of housing even with controlled immigration is one thing; the pressure put on it by illegal immigration is quite another. A points-based system will help control legal immigration but illegal immigration is running out of control. For every eighteen migrants who try to enter the country illegally, and succeed in reaching Britain, seventeen are allowed to stay. And these figure are for those who are apprehended at our borders. God knows how many enter without being detected. With such odds, is it any surprise they keep trying? The Government needs a firm policy of sending these illegals back where they came from. And remember, they are NOT fleeing war zones or persecution, they are fleeing France or some other benign Western European state.
    In addition, it should be a requirement for any new development that developers must adopt a different building strategy now that only areas in danger of being flooded are becoming available for building new houses. It is beyond doubt that climate change is a fact and that the UK is now regularly subject to far more rain than we have experienced hitherto. Even those areas that have not flooded for over a hundred years are now often in danger. Sacrificial ground floors that could be used for parking or hanging up clothes to dry must become the order of the day.

  41. Ken Moore
    Posted January 16, 2020 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

    Re:The drainage problem. The government’s solution is simple – blame global warming!

    Re: The points based migration system. What is being done to control the far higher levels of non EU immigration ?

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  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, He graduated from Magdalen College Oxford, has a DPhil and is a fellow of All Souls College. A businessman by background, he has been a director of NM Rothschild merchant bank and chairman of a quoted industrial PLC.

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