Monthly Archives: March 2015

What sort of disadvantages are faced when the entire process of buyers agents fail?

The TCPA therefore supports the proposal to introduce a new payment under the Organic Aid Scheme for converting land for growing fruit and vegetables. The costs of producing an organic conversion plan may be prohibitive for some farmers and crofters, so financial support of £300 or up to 50% of costs seems reasonable. Extending payments to organic farmers beyond the conversion period would bring us in line with other European Member States who offer on-going support. The TCPA believes that the proposals would benefit from some geographical distinction between types of area (urban fringe, accessible rural, remote rural).

In particular we would like to see special financial support schemes for local food production in the urban fringe. The TCPA’s origins in the Garden City movement, Real Estate Buyers Agent together with an appreciation of ecological footprint analysis, lead us to believe in the need for greater interdependence between town and country. This would capture the benefits of both town and country, and create some degree of local self reliance. Making settlements more sustainable will require food production for local markets both at the urban-rural interface and in the wider countryside. This will need integration between planning policies and agricultural support mechanisms.

For instance planning policies which encourage mixed organic farming and low-impact communities  Radical thinking like this may be the only way to reclaim the urban fringe for local production, as current land prices, together with green belt planning restrictions, tend to exclude potential local producers from the land around towns. The Association would be pleased to clarify or discuss these matters if that would be helpful.

The consultation will provide a valuable input from those actively involved in implementing sustainable development at the local level. The principal consequence in the EU Directive is to add a requirement for a much fuller consideration of alternative options for achieving the Plan’s objective. The ODPM proposals include a detailed procedure to amalgamate the current methods for sustainability This includes a very elaborate scoping stage, as well as a subsequent full Environmental Report. All these are to be welcomed.

Nevertheless there are some concerns that TCPA wishes to raise with ODPM, chiefly relating to the complexity and resource implications of the proposals. Additionally, the TCPA believes that building on the existing system of Sustainability Appraisal could well satisfy the requirements of the EU Directive, preventing unnecessary confusion and complication. In order to elaborate on the points made in this response, we are keen to meet with the ODPM.