HL Deb 19 June 1997 vol 580 cc138-9WA
Lord Mason of Barnsley

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What plans they have to introduce a new permitted development right for householders to extend their gardens.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (Baroness Hayman)

A consultation paper was issued last November on a proposal that householders should in future be able to extend their gardens onto adjacent land without needing to submit a planning application. The Department of the Environment received 425 replies, copies of which have now been placed in the department's library. Three hundred and sixty-one expressed opposition and only 34 offered support. Many objections concentrated on the damaging impact that such a proposal could have on the open countryside with the creeping suburbanisation of specially protected areas such as the National Parks and the Green Belt. Concern was also expressed about the resulting lack of control over the erection of ancillary buildings and the absence of any size limit on the land which could be added to a garden.

The Government's view is that the impact of a proposed garden extension is best considered, as at present, through the normal planning process and my honourable friends the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions and the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Wales have therefore decided to withdraw this proposal.