Levelling Up & Regeneration Bill: Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich supports development of housing for older people

On 18th April 2023, the Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich spoke in support of amendments to the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill regarding the importance of housing for older people:

The Lord Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich: I shall speak very briefly in support of the group of amendments, on none of which would I dare wish to claim to be an agnostic. I particularly support Amendment 207 proposed by the noble Lord, Lord Best, to which my colleague the right reverend Prelate the Bishop of Chelmsford has added her name. The amendment addresses the important role of local authorities to consider older groups’ housing needs when developing local plans. Together with Amendment 221 from the noble Lord, Lord Best, these changes to the Bill would deliver a more effective response to the shortfall in appropriate housing for older people at all levels of government.

The Mayhew review for future-proofing retirement needs recommended

“closer working between planning and social care departments to ensure the need for retirement housing with access to care is factored into local authority plans”.

This amendment would be a step towards making that kind of joined-up thinking and development a reality.


Extracts from the speeches that followed:

Lord Best (CB): The right reverend Prelate the Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich reminded us of Professor Mayhew’s recent review of housing for older people. Professor Mayhew got to a figure of 50,000 homes being required every year, which is further than others have taken this. That was a seminal and very important report, and he made the fundamental point—which is in my original amendment that started this debate—that the local plan needs to incorporate a requirement for a proportion of housing for older people.

Baroness Taylor of Stevenage (Lab): In his characteristically powerful and knowledgeable speech, the noble Lord, Lord Best, referred to the older people’s housing taskforce. We look forward to that, but I hope that to some extent we can pre-empt the obvious conclusion that local authorities must plan for older residents and those who need supported housing. I was grateful to the right reverend Prelate for his timely reminder of the Mayhew review and its powerful recommendations. I hope we will consider them as we go forward with this Bill.

%d bloggers like this: