What we want is a housing policy for Cornwall that meets our housing needs, not one that meets the demands of developers or the desire of people who ‘want to get away from it all’ and move to Cornwall.
We want good quality housing for all, so that everyone can have affordable housing, good quality housing and live in a pleasant environment.
We must end the current situation where too many find it hard or impossible to afford to live in Cornwall. Affordable should mean what it says on the tin – affordable whether to buy or rent. We need to make it easier for people to buy homes at affordable prices and to rent. This requires intervention so that rents reflect not the market but earnings. Investment is essential to provide social housing with affordable rents.
We have moved away from minimum standards of housing we need to ensure that people have sufficient space (houses in the UK are smaller than in many European countries and getting smaller); that people are not crammed into high density developments (ah yes high density is seen as desirable by various architects and policy makers but desirable for others!); and households have good garden space.
A good quality environment is not just an add-on but essential for health, well-being and quality of life. A good quality environment encompasses green areas (no, not those mown areas which disfigure our towns); tranquility (building houses next to roundabouts is not on); a lack of pollution – whether noise, light or air pollution; and one that is sustainable.
We must end the current system where the haves can enjoy the ‘good life’ while the have-nots have to put up with sub-standard conditions.