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Planners welcome Government guidance on 'Garden-Grabbing'

20 January 2010

The RTPI has welcomed Planning Minister John Healey's announcement that his department will issue new guidance to encourage local councils to use existing powers to protect back gardens from housing development.

Tino Hernandez, Head of Communications at the RTPI said:

\"Councils already have powers that they can use to stop development in back gardens. But if they want to do this they need to get local policies in place against 'garden grabbing'. Councils who don't do that will find that it much more difficult to turn down speculative development in back gardens.

Of course, some local authorities might prefer for development to take place on existing gardens rather than green-field land, but that decision is rightly for the local council to take about what they think is best for their area.

The fact that only 5% of councils who think 'garden grabbing' is a problem actually have policies in place against garden development reinforces the need for more guidance and we're glad that the Government has acted on this key issue which is of concern to many local people.\"