The recent Queen’s Speech introduced the Levelling-up and Regeneration Bill ‘to drive local growth, empowering local leaders to regenerate their areas’, with implications for conservation and the historic environment offered a cautious welcome by the IHBC, while also highlighting capacity issues in local authorities.
… some of the more radical changes to planning legislation have been abandoned…
IHBC Chair David McDonald said: ‘As a hefty document consisting of over 300 pages and containing 196 clauses, there is a great deal to absorb in the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill. So we’ll deliberate and consult more before commenting in detail.’
…some specific ‘heritage’ clauses can be welcomed, including the duty to have special regard to the preservation or enhancement…
‘At first glance, it is reassuring to see that some of the more radical changes to planning legislation have been abandoned and we have a Bill that seeks to rectify some faults and generally improve the existing system of plan-making and management. A number of clauses will have implications for the historic environment including the use of design codes, and these will require further examination.’
‘However, some specific ‘heritage’ clauses can be welcomed, including the duty to have special regard to the preservation or enhancement of a number of additional heritage assets including Registered Parks and Gardens and World Heritage Sites. But it is disappointing that the opportunity seems to have been missed to extend setting to the protection of conservation areas. Other helpful improvements include proposals for Temporary Stop Notices, amendments to Urgent Works Notices and removal of the compensation provisions in relation to Building Preservation Notices.’
‘I look forward to continuing discussions with DLUHC and DCMS to ensure that these proposal can be successfully implemented’.
… may be that we need to take a wider view of fundamentals here, including the current tax-based funding model…
IHBC President Mike Brown said: ‘While many of these reforms are welcome, the issue will be who will be left in Local Authorities to implement them. An exodus of talent, with many exhausted staff getting out from an intolerable workload, now seems the norm.’
‘Attempts to recruit reveal a paucity of talented young people coming into the profession.
‘It may be that we need to take a wider view of fundamentals here, including the current tax-based funding model. The facts remain that local Conservation Services are chronically underfunded and the Government giving the brave few yet more to do is not the way to protect Britain’s heritage.’
See more on the Queen’s Speed via Designing Buildings HERE:
See more on the ‘Levelling-up and Regeneration Bill’
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