The RTPI is proud to be a founding partner of a coalition of organisations with an interest in the housing needs of the nation. The group of organisations have supported a campaign to bring together all those who believe that everyone has a right to a decent affordable home to call their own. The coalition is led by the following, but includes over a hundred other organisations:
- National Housing Federation (NHF)
- Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI)
- Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH)
- Home Builders Federation (HBF)
- National House Building Council (NHBC)
- Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)
- Residential Landlords Association (RLA)
At a time when housing in this country has descended into crisis, a coalition of organisations from every corner of the housing world have come together and decided to take action. Under the, 'Homes for Britain' banner this coalition is now asking for all political parties to commit to ending the housing crisis within a generation. Further to this, the campaign is asking for the government to publish a long-term plan for housing within the first year of taking office, setting out how they will end the housing crisis within a generation. You can read more about the campaign here.
Background – the issue
Lack of housing has impacted society in many ways. House prices have doubled in real terms over the past 40 years and the average first time buyer today needs a £30,000 deposit, almost ten times the deposit required in the early 1980s (NHF, 2014). This makes it difficult for first time buyers to purchase a home, or, for existing owners to trade up to a home with more space. In addition, we are currently only building half the number of homes we need every year.
As a result, many people are stuck in housing that is too small, so put off starting families, while others are still living with parents or in rented accommodation, as a first home is unaffordable. Also, people commute long distances because they are, 'priced out' of the areas where they work. The housing crisis affects people from all walks of life and right across the country in many different ways. There are many examples of how the housing crisis affects people.
The campaign built up to a rally on Westminster on the 17 March 2015. All the founding partners were represented included the RTPI as well as hundreds of other organisations and associations concered about the housing crisis. The rally was covered by the BBC and The Guardian. The Chief Executive of the RTPI led a session at the rally. Trudi chaired a discussion on the seminal 1960s film Cathy Come Home which led to the formation of Crisis. Trudi's panel included the film's director Ken Loach, Crisis Chief Executive Matt Downey, Shelter Chief Executive Campbell Rob and Member of the Homeless Youth Parliament Mariam Ahmed.
Left to right: Matt Downey - Crisis Chief Executive, Trudi Elliott - RTPI Chief Executive Ken Loach - Film Director 'Cathy Come Home', Campbell Robb - Shelter Chief Executive, Marium Ahmed - Member of the Homeless Youth Parliament.
Listen to the session podcast.
RTPI staff and members also attended the rally which included a range of speakers from the main political parties and campaign groups. There was also music and short films shown to highlight the scale of the problem.
Trudi Elliott also spoke on BBC Radio London on the morning of the rally, where 2,500 people turned out to support the campaign. The rally was held at Westminster's Methodist Central Hall. During the BBC interview, Trudi explained the housing need across London, emphasising that the housing crisis has been a generation in the making. She also spoke about all the activity in the run up to the rally, including social media campaigning and housing posters covering Westminster tube station.
Trudi Elliott on the Homes for Britain campaign bus
Kathie Pollard, RTPI Policy and Networks Advisor
Next steps - how you can be involved…
1. Become a supporter of the campaign by registering on the Homes for Britain website – you can do this as an individual or organisation. There are various resources on the campaign website to show support and once you register, you will be emailed about this.
2. Download the posters below and use them to show your support and get the messages out about the campaign (with the permission of the appropriate bodies, wherever you choose to display them).
I support Homes for Britain
Homes to call their own
Worried your children...
3. You can also make comments about the Homes for Britain blogs, and share them on social media with your friends and followers to get people talking about the issue – ultimately getting them to explore the website and take action themselves, you can see the blogs here
The campaign website is: http://homesforbritain.org.uk/
Follow the campaign on Twitter: @homesforbritain and join in the conversation on #homesforbritain