Planning Reform Desperately Needed For A System In Freefall

Chancellor Rachel Reeves has today (8 July) promised to take immediate action to fix the foundations of the economy, rebuild Britain and make every part of the country​ better off.

In her first speech as Chancellor, Rachel Reeves pledged to leaders of some of the UK’s pioneering industries to build growth on strong and secure foundations built on stability, investment and reform, and forged through a new partnership with the private sector.

Addressing the difficult economic inheritance this government faces, she committed to taking immediate action to drive sustained economic growth, the only route to improving the prosperity of our country and the living standards of working people.

Setting out her first steps to deliver on the government’s commitments in its manifesto that every action it takes will be based on sound money and economy stability, the Chancellor promised a new economic model that will grow the economy and keep taxes, inflation and mortgages as low as possible.

The Chancellor said had the UK economy grown at the average rate of OECD economies over the fourteen years from 2010, it would be £143.3 billion larger – worth £5,053 for every household in the country. This could have brought in an additional £58 billion in tax revenues in the last year alone to sustain our public services.

The current planning regime, the chancellor said acts as a major brake on economic growth which is why the government will make the changes the country needs to forge ahead with new roads, railways, reservoirs, and other nationally significant infrastructure.

UKHospitality has continued to call for a faster, streamlined approach to planning, to drive business expansion and growth.

Responding to the Chancellor’s speech this morning, Kate Nicholls, Chief Executive of UKHospitality, said:
“It was encouraging to hear from the Chancellor that the government intends to put growth at the centre of the planning system.

“Planning approvals are in freefall, with the level of applications decided within statutory time limits falling every year since 2013.

“Too many hospitality businesses with ambitions to expand and grow are held back and frustrated by the current system.

“Planning reform is desperately needed, to unlock business ambitions and develop local infrastructure. The two go hand-in-hand, with many hospitality businesses often finding recruitment challenging due to the lack of housing available, particularly in rural areas.

“Putting growth as a central aim of the planning system can allow hospitality businesses to create new jobs, drive economic growth and contribute to the regeneration and renewal of our towns and cities.”