Avoid Unnecessary Planning Restrictions

I do NOT mean allowing developers to build all over Bristol’s precious greenspace [see Protect Bristol’s Greenspace].

What I do mean is for ordinary residents who just want to build an extension or conservatory etc. Unless they plan some monstrosity which will be an eyesore or inconvenience to others – why not let them? Council planners have a reputation of arrogance and stubbornness with a fixed idea about how an area should look, in which they've never lived and possibly don't even pass through.

Safety must be the first priority, then avoiding inconvenience to neighbours and others who share the space around us – but, apart from that, any reasonable planning requests should be allowed. In France, permission is decided locally by people who live and work in the same area – that may be more sensible than being decided by an official who lives the other side of town (or maybe not even in Bristol!).

Central Government are making planning permission simpler but I am nervous about what protection they intend for greenspace and other considerations. A free-for-all for developers would be disastrous! [See also: Neighbourhood Watch]

Before allowing development of any town or city, it is vital to consider the wellbeing of those already living there eg building thousands of houses on Filton airfield would likely be terrible for everyone in North Bristol.

A good rule of thumb might be: if you wouldn't want it in your own backyard, don't inflict it on anybody else!