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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    London, Britannia.

    Question News :: London borough 2 "force" developers 2 sell ALL new homes to local residents.

    Article extract >>

    The Times November 14, 2005

    Super-rich barred as Kensington keeps it in family
    By Jill Sherman, Whitehall Editor

    THE children of well-heeled families in one of Britain’s most exclusive enclaves could be given a leg up the property ladder by its Conservative-controlled council.
    The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is alarmed that families who have lived in the area for generations are being priced out of the property market by foreign and British investors. It also objects to rich bankers with houses in the country who buy second homes in the West London borough which they or their wives use occasionally.

    In an area popular with rock stars, Russian tycoons and Arab royalty, where houses regularly sell for more than £4 million, it seems that the average trustafarian twentysomething does not stand a chance.

    To protect them from having to move to less salubrious areas such as Battersea or Clapham, the borough is planning to force developers to sell all new properties to local residents or their families, The Times has learnt.

    The rule is likely to mean that a legally enforceable provision would be included in planning permission for new homes and conversions of residential property, requiring that they are sold only to buyers with a local connection.

    The district, which boasts the highest property prices in the country, is home to celebrities and multimillionaires including Robbie Williams, J. K. Rowling and Sir Richard Branson. Bryan Adams, the rock star, has created a £15 million property empire in Chelsea, with six houses in one road, Cheyne Walk.

    The playwright Harold Pinter, his wife, Lady Antonia Fraser, Tony Benn and David Cameron also live in the area which includes Kensington Palace Gardens or “Millionaires Row”, where houses sell for up to £70 million.

    The proposal to ban outsiders is one of several options in a new development plan from the council, which is to go out to public consultation today. It mirrors similar schemes in rural areas in the Yorkshire Dales and Devon.

    Daniel Moylan, deputy leader and cabinet member for planning policy at Kensington and Chelsea, said that the borough was already packed full and the demand for housing was set to grow enormously as the population expanded.

    Mr Moylan, a Tory councillor, said: “Families in Kensington and Chelsea are leaving because they can’t afford to stay here. New property is being snapped up by people looking to make a quick buck or a fat investment which is helping to drive prices up to levels which locals cannot afford.”

    He argues that if outside investors were banned from buying new homes the market would adjust and prices go down. The plan would be to offer new flats only to those already living in the borough, or their families.

    The borough is one of the most densely populated in Britain and most of the new properties are either new builds split into flats or conversions of Edwardian and Victorian properties.

    Mr Moylan said: “Over the next ten years the population in London will grow by several hundred thousand. We have to build homes for them and Kensington and Chelsea wants to play its part.

    “But it does not help if flats go to foreign investors buying pieds-à-terre for their wives to go on shopping trips to Knightsbridge.

    “The character of this part of London is changing. The only people now living there are the very elderly and investment bankers. We need to bring back diversity into the area by ensuring that families are no longer pushed out.

    End extract <<

    For full article ::,00.html

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    by its Conservative-controlled council.
    Aren't the conservatives supposed to be behind the free market and all, or is that just when it isn't effecting their children directly?

    I hope by extension they're going to force all those families in chelsea and kensington to sell their rural holiday homes and holiday homes abroad because they're driving up the prices of housing in other areas and leaving houses standing empty for 11 months of the year while local residents are forced to leave villages because there's no affordable housing left (not to mention the effect that has on the economy of those rural areas).

    Perhaps there's some value in trying to keep a reign on the housing market, but why does this seem like one rule for the rich, and one rule for the rest of us to me. This is particularly rich coming from a tory council.

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