Bishop of Rochester supports Bill to improve fitness of homes for human habitation

On 23rd November 2018 the House of Lords considered a Private member’s Bill from Lord Best, the ‘Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill’. The Bishop of Rochester, Rt Revd James Langstaff, spoke in its support:

The Lord Bishop of Rochester: My Lords, I too am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Best, for his advocacy of this Bill in your Lordships’ House and for his customary detailed and lucid comments in introducing the debate. I also salute the indefatigable work of the Member for Westminster North, who has already been referred to, and look forward to what we all hope will be a positive response to this debate from the Minister.

Like many others, I am very supportive of any efforts to improve and assure the quality of accommodation in the rental sector, whether that be individual, corporate or social landlords. I did, however, have a slight moment of hesitation about speaking on this, as I became conscious that the Church of England, in its various national and local corporate guises, is a not inconsiderable landlord. Continue reading “Bishop of Rochester supports Bill to improve fitness of homes for human habitation”

Written Answer – Bishop of St Albans questions the Government about Planning Policy in Rural Areas

On the 07 August 2018 the Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Dr Alan Smith received a written answer from Lord Bourne about planning policy in rural areas.

Continue reading “Written Answer – Bishop of St Albans questions the Government about Planning Policy in Rural Areas”

Bishop of Chester highlights importance of credit unions and financial education

On 12th July 2018 Lord Leigh of Hurley led a debate in the House of Lords on the motion, “That this House takes note of the measures being taken to promote personal savings and the role they can play in building a stronger and fairer economy.” The Bishop of Chester, Rt Revd Peter Forster, spoke in the debate:

The Lord Bishop of Chester: My Lords, on behalf of the House, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Lilley, for his splendid maiden speech and look forward to many contributions from him in future. He mentioned the kingdom of Mercia; Chester was the northern outpost of that kingdom, so I look forward to collaboration with the noble Lord, as we do collaborate on a think tank concerned with energy and climate policy. Continue reading “Bishop of Chester highlights importance of credit unions and financial education”

Bishop of St Albans asks Government about draft National Planning Policy Framework

 

StAlbans161117

On 11th July 2018 the Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith received written answers to four questions on the draft National Planning Policy Framework:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: 

(i) To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they intend to develop local-connection criteria for the proposed Entry Level Exception Site policy in the draft National Planning Policy Framework. Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks Government about draft National Planning Policy Framework”

Bishop of St Albans asks Government about social housing supply in rural areas

On 27th March 2018 Lord Bassam of Brighton asked Her Majesty’s Government “what further measures, if any, they plan to take to increase the supply of council housing stock to replace homes for rent lost through right-to-buy sales”. The Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a follow-up question:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: May I push the Minister a little more on the whole question of rural housing? Only 12% of the rural housing stock is social housing, compared with 19% in urban areas. How exactly are Her Majesty’s Government going to increase the level of rural social housing over the coming years? Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks Government about social housing supply in rural areas”

Bishop of Newcastle says housing shortage must be tackled by helping small builders and lifting restrictions on local authorities to borrow and build

On Thursday 11th January 2018 the House of Lords debated a motion from Lord Best, “That this House takes note of the performance of the United Kingdom’s major housebuilders.” The Bishop of Newcastle, Rt Revd Christine Hardman, spoke in the debate:

The Lord Bishop of Newcastle: My Lords, it may be no coincidence of timing that as we debate the performance of the major housebuilders, every day this week in the financial press we have seen the trading results of many of these major companies, the latest being Barratt this morning, the country’s largest housebuilder. There is a consistent picture of extraordinarily high levels of profit and cash being returned to shareholders. However, my first point is that past history tells us this will not last. Housebuilding is a highly cyclical industry and when the next recession comes, new house sales will plummet, as they did in ​2003 and 2008. Housebuilders, especially the smaller ones, will fail, and there will be high unemployment in the building trades. Continue reading “Bishop of Newcastle says housing shortage must be tackled by helping small builders and lifting restrictions on local authorities to borrow and build”

Bishop of St Albans asks about help for homeless care leavers and ex-offenders

On 10th January 2018 the Bishop ofSt Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, received a written answer to two questions on rough sleeping in London by care leavers and ex-offenders:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: 

(i) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the finding of the APPG on Homelessness that, between January and March, 11 per cent of rough sleepers in London were care leavers; and what assessment they have made of the quality of housing support provision for care leavers. HL4372

(ii) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the finding of the APPG on Homelessness that, between January and March, 37 per cent of rough sleepers in London had experience of being in prison; and what assessment they have made of housing support provision for ex-offenders. Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks about help for homeless care leavers and ex-offenders”