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General Discussion

Diana Mond
Diana Mond
09 Nov 2017 18:19

Over the whole of Teignbridge, only 5% of the land is built on, lower than the UK figure of 5.9%.   Food for thought for those that think that we’re living in a concrete jungle, or that our country is full. 


This is from the BBC land use map published today. 

10 Nov 2017 08:11

Yes I always say to myself, sarcastically, when travelling around the country and seeing vast amounts of open countryside - "Gosh, this country is just so full" (or words to that effect).  


Click on this link to see the BBC report  

10 Nov 2017 10:35

A country's land mass bears no relation to its abilitity to provide adequate infrastructure for its people.  England is now the most densely populated country in Europe, some parts have a built-on ratio of 80%+, so for those people it would quite likely feel they were living in a "concrete jungle".  The BBC link shows that almost 60% of land is used for farming, that fact seems lost on the people who can only see green fields and think we are not "full".  

3 Agrees
10 Nov 2017 11:19

I understand that about 60% of the food consumed in the UK is grown here.  The other 40% being imported. 

Therefore, as I see it, the more agricultural land that gets used for new housing development (and we do need more houses) the less there is then available for food production.  So we will need to import even more food?


Was just having a quick read about this food self sufficiency/food security issue and came across this. Which I post to further this food/land/population debate:


 " We should not even attempt to be food self sufficient. It does not matter. We live on a cold island in a northern climate and we could not come close to growing ingredients for a varied, healthy, interesting and balanced diet, at least not without the expense of masses of oil to heat and light it. We are not food self sufficient because we cannot grow oranges, lemons, bananas, pineapples, chillies, spices...and on and on. We cannot produce wine in quantity. We would have poor nutrition without imports, as we did for centuries and as we did when imports failed in the war years - at least for the majority. OUr non-self sufficiency in food is one of our greatest success stories - we have probably the widest range of food available on common supermarket shelves that I have seen anywhere in Europe, North America or Oceania - only Australia comes anywhere near close, and lack easy access to many roots."



10 Nov 2017 11:58

Wasn't all this 'new build' pushed through to alleviate the large numbers of local people who were unable to buy their own homes and alleviate the ever growing numbers of people without homes?

As can be seen over the last few years many developers wriggle their way out of producing the numbers of homes required for such people.

It's all well and good importing food, etc from abroad, but if the u.k. is ever subjected to another, long term sea/air blockade this will not be a very hospitable isle to live on.

Decades of lax immigration control, dwindling cops on the beat, ineffectual court sentences and limp wristed politicians have brought this country to its current cimate.

To think G.B. was once the largest and most powerful EMPIRE the WORLD had ever seen, so sad we are now the back end of nothing and a hot spot destination for the dross of the planet.

6 Agrees
10 Nov 2017 14:39

Some points:

The beginnings of the shortage of housing that people could afford to buy/rent can be traced back to the Thatcherite policy of Right to Buy of council housing stock.  Whilst the RtB policy created many more home owners, its legislation forbade local councils from building more homes to replace those that had been sold. It was argued that the private sector would pick up the rental demand. Which it did. But as private sector rents are more expensive than social rents the housing benefit bill increased, and increased and increased and........    


The relatively new, new build developments, were pushed through via the Conservative/Lib Dem coalition government's loosening of the planning regulations back in 2011/2012. They produced a document called the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).  


The concept of 'affordable' housing was also a product of that government. 'Affordable' was meant in the sense that the cost to buy a new property being 80% of the local market rate. Ditto rental housing (from a housing association, for example).


Agree developers will find ways to avoid building 'affordable' (ie at 80% of the local market rate) properties. That's why councils need to be able to build homes - just as they used to be able to do - many years ago.  


The increase in demand for housing has not only be caused by immigration but also by other factors such as people living longer (therefore housing stock is not coming back on the market as frequently has it might have done some 50+ years ago) and more families splitting up such that whereas before they all lived in one dwelling now they might live in two. Extrapolate all that lot out along with a shortage in house building and you can start to see where the housing crisis has come from.   


I agree that our island status makes us very vulnerable. Not only with regard to food but also with regard to energy. How to solve that?


Dwindling cops on the beat probably due to dwindling amounts of money going into the police service. Why is that?


Empires come and empires go.  


And ours has now gone as well.


The world has moved on.


Talking of empires and food. I know there are a few tea plantations in Cornwall but surely they would not be able to meet the UK demand for tea should our imports from Asia dry up.  


And where would we grow the bananas? And oranges?  etc etc etc 









10 Nov 2017 20:21

But with climate change crops will change we grow more than you think Lynne for arguments sake we produce Saffron,Chillies and peppers are grown by the millions, we produce Strawberries nearly all year round. We used to manage without all these foods from abroad and we ate what was in season leeks, cabbage,carrots, turnip,and the tops, lots of fruit,pears,we grow the best apples in the world, plums,rasberries,black and red currents.  It may not be long untill we can grow rice, my father used to grow his own tobacco, we have some of the best growing land in the world and yes it could be we will be growing oranges in the future.

2 Agrees
10 Nov 2017 20:31

Actually if the world warms up then our climate could well become colder.

Why? Because if the Gulf Stream is disrupted (and it is the warmth of the Gulf Stream that keeps our climate as temperate as it is) then we will have a much colder climate in this country.   

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