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Match the right people to the right homes

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It appears it is mainly developers and Martin Pawley (AJ 4.4.02) who feel that future housing needs can only be met using green belt land.

The public perception of idyllic country living has all but gone, following years of land pollution, flooding and foot-and-mouth disease, and despite the lack of transport systems necessary to make urban areas work better, regeneration has already started.

Rising house prices - a continuous and natural process - has been a particular godsend to tatty urban areas which for decades have been deteriorating.

People regenerating their homes in ever-increasing numbers now see the crisis as one of providing equivalent improvements with schools, medical needs, facilities and jobs etc, to match aspirations in their areas. It takes time and a million houses shortfall over 20 years would be more serious if you were talking about four-bedroom detached houses with three parking spaces - you are not. The movement of people - single and couples - into appropriate accommodation that suits them, rather than family houses, will reduce that deficit.

The greatest contribution to sustainability would be people living in the correct accommodation, not necessarily building new homes.

Architects are delivering the goods by not building large estates of family houses in green belts, but by turning their attention to the priorities of the town, instead.

The countryside should be valued for what it is, not for its potential development value and its lessening use for farming does not lessen its attraction and environmental value any the less.

Rex Hawkesworth, Portsmouth

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