Planning White Paper to be published 'in the first half of this year', says Jenrick

The government is looking to publish the long-awaited Planning White Paper 'in the first half of this year', the housing secretary Robert Jenrick has said.

The minister was speaking at a press conference following his speech at yesterday’s launch of the final report of the Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission.

Asked about the timing and content of the Planning White Paper, Jenrick said: "We haven't given a time for it other than to say it will be in the first half of this year - so you won’t have to wait too long for it.

"We want it to be a very ambitious document that addresses a number of different challenges - ways of accelerating the planning system, making it simpler and cheaper and promoting better quality design and unlocking more land for new homes to be built."

He said the paper would look at "experiences of the general public as they want to do simple changes to their properties", adding that ministers "believe the system should be simpler and cheaper for them".

There would also be measures to help smaller builders and self builders as well as how the system can work better for larger developers, he said.

The white paper will also focus on promoting better quality design, he added, and accommodate some of the recommendations of the commission's report.

"What’s been set out in the report will be one of the themes of the white paper, so we will try and find ways to embed that in each of the actions that we take forward," he said.