Westminster Social Policy Forum

Next steps for house building in England - planning, investment and innovation

Morning, Tuesday, 29th October 2019

Emmanuel Centre, 9-23 Marsham Street, London SW1P 3DW


With the Government response to Sir Oliver Letwin’s Independent Review of Build Out outlining plans to bring forth additional planning guidance on housing diversification - as part of wider efforts to support a diverse range of housing needs - delegates will assess priorities for tackling barriers to building new homes and the impact of proposals to speed up change of use and extend permitted development rights.

This also follows the announcement of a forthcoming ‘Accelerated Planning Green Paper’, which is expected to recommend steps for moving the decision-making process within the planning system forward, and accelerating the end-to-end process of housing delivery and set out the Government’s response to their consultation on extending Permitted Development Rights to retail properties.

We expect further discussion on recommendations in the NAO’s Planning for New Homes report for more joined-up government working and improved co-operation between the MHCLG and councils to deliver infrastructure, better monitoring of the gap between housing delivery aims and delivery, and more effective developer contributions towards infrastructure.

The seminar comes as MHCLG’s Housing Delivery Tests reveal that many councils are failing to meet their objectively-assessed need targets and as the revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) encourages local authorities to proactively make use of brownfield sites.

This also follows the announcement that Government will work towards negotiating a Built Environment Sector Deal with industry - which will prioritise the delivery of homes through new initiative schemes, enhancing sector productivity, improving skills in the workforce, and supporting the development of clean growth.

Land use and housing deals

Delegates will also discuss how local authorities and housebuilders can better utilise land to deliver new homes and link housing with existing and emerging infrastructure.

This comes after

Innovation to improve energy efficiency, reduce cost and improve quality

We also expect discussion on the future of innovation in housebuilding - including the potential use of modern methods of construction.

Discussion will draw on the Chancellor’s announcement that there will be a Future Homes Standard on new build homes by 2025 to ensure that they are equipped with the latest low-carbon and energy efficient technology and as the Government welcomes the Building Better, Building Beautiful commission with a view to improving the suitability, design and aesthetics of new development.

Keynote Speaker

Stephen Dance

Director of Infrastructure Delivery, Infrastructure Projects Authority

Keynote Speakers

Sarah Fox

Deputy Director, Planning Policy and Reform, MHCLG

Stephen Dance

Director of Infrastructure Delivery, Infrastructure Projects Authority

Aileen Murphie

Director, MHCLG & Local Government Value for Money, National Audit Office


Tom Copley AM

Chair, Housing Committee and Member, Planning Committee, London Assembly


Paul Munday

Fund Manager, Funding Affordable Homes

Omer Weinberger

Managing Partner, Avanton

Chris Wood

Head of Policy, Shelter

Gwyn Roberts

Homes and Communities Lead, Building Research Establishment

Adrian Cooper

Manager, Planning Policy and Strategy, Shropshire Council

Julian Higson

Director, Housing and Landlord Services, Bristol City Council

Sally Jupp

Partner, Burges Salmon

Richard Starr

Executive Director, Head of Property, Palace Capital

Senior speaker to be confirmed from Homes England

Homes England

Rosie Toogood

Chief Executive Officer, Legal & General Modular Homes