Please contact your MP and any Members of the House of Lords that you know with views on the issues relating to the building of basements below houses. It is important that they understand the problems and contribute to the debate on the Bill announced below.
You can find details and track the progress of the Bill and the debates here
In 2011, Newsforum 58 – page 12 had an article on what the Heath and Hampstead Society had done about basements. Westminster City Council and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea have introduced Local Plan policies to control basement developments. See the Guardian article about the latter.
There are other topics covered by updates and Twitter entries in London Forum’s web site here.
A Bill to regulate the construction of new basements and the extension of existing ones, received its first reading in the Commons on the 12th November. The Permitted Development (Basements) Bill 2013-14 was introduced by Karen Buck, MP for Westminster North, as a Private Members Bill.
In her speech to the House, Ms Buck said, “What matters here is not just the impact of the individual project, but the cumulative impact of so many basement excavations on their neighbours and local communities…The fact is that only a change in the law can help local councils do what they want to do to protect their residents.”
The Bill is expected to have its second reading debate on the 28th February 2014.