The Prince’s Foundation has launched Housing Britain, a blueprint aimed at addressing issues around housing in the UK. The 64-page publication was presented on Friday [June 28] to key industry partners and stakeholders at Dumfries House in East Ayrshire, which hosted a topical panel debate followed by a lunch reception.
Housing Britain contains a 14-point “call to action” [see Editor’s Notes, below] articulated by a range of industry pioneers. Running on the theme of how to achieve mixed-use places rather than homogeneous housing estates, the content aims to provide landowners, civic leaders, community groups and developers with a reference guide to encourage construction projects that place long-term gain above short-term profit.
Ben Bolgar, senior director of The Prince’s Foundation, said: “We are proud to present Housing Britain, a collection of best-in-class thinking from those in the industry, providing compelling arguments that can help inform decision-makers when tackling issues around housing in the UK.
“This blueprint has been published by The Prince’s Foundation, which, like its legacy charity The Prince’s Foundation for Building Community, has gained a reputation as a leader in the theory and practice of establishing beautiful, enduring buildings and places. Our efforts in this field are inspired by the work of our charity’s president The Prince of Wales and his philosophy on what makes successful and prosperous communities. The content of Housing Britain draws on the expertise and contacts we have gained over the years to provide comprehensive insight and analysis that we hope will help change the face of housing in Britain.”
For the past 30 years, The Prince of Wales has championed community-led, mixed-use, attractive, walkable housing developments with future generations in mind. The publication of Housing Britain comes 30 years on from the publication of His Royal Highness’s book A Vision Of Britain.
The launch event on Friday provided an opportunity for key decision-makers to come together to debate the issues raised in Housing Britain and take them forward in a meaningful way. Panel members and their respective subject matters were as follows:
- Jack Airey
‒ Head of Housing, Policy Exchange, whose work on raising housebuilding
standards has attracted cross-party support and led to the Government creating
the Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission.
The politics of the UK Housing crisis with current up to date analysis and key statistics
- The Earl of
Moray ‒ landowner and developer of Tornagrain, a 5000-home village near
The role the landowner plays in long term stewardship and legacy development, challenges and why it matters for Britain’s future communities.
Cameron ‒ engineer with more than 20 years of experience in planning for
movement while at the same time creating great streets and enjoyable places.
The importance of shared public spaces for building community; How to integrate movement, not just cars; Manual for streets and technological change.
- Kit Martin
‒ architectural designer, Phoenix Trust:
The plight of heritage buildings in the last 100 years and positive regeneration examples providing future inspiration.
- Kim Slowe:
developer and managing director of Zero C and Design Your Own Home
Importance of mixed-use in development and how it can add value; SME builder’s role; Custom-build potential.
The principles of housing design and planning espoused in Housing Britain are reflected in The Prince’s Foundation’s Beauty In My Backyard (BIMBY) toolkit, which is available free of charge. The online resource, based on more than 20 years of community engagement techniques, aims to unite local communities, planners and landowners to develop a shared vision for locally popular places. The toolkit creates a local housing manual to help set agreed standards that should pave the way for a faster and more certain route to an agreeable planning permission.