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OBRA and Planning Issues

We all care about proposed changes to the area in which we live. Even changes not directly next to us could affect the quality of our lives and those of other residents. OBRA is not against development, we simply want to make sure

Find out what is being proposed.

Government changes to planning regulations and cutbacks in Council spending, mean that proposed developments are not advertised as often or as widely as they used to be. The time frames for making responses are quite short so please be alert to what is being proposed in our community and let us know if you hear about anything that you have concerns about . It may be appropriate for OBRA to make formal  representations on specific applications, although recent government changes to householder permitted development rights may restrict the ability to object to certain proposals. l

Localism and the Bassett Neighbourhood Plan

Local residents and businesses across Bassett were the first in the country to try to develop a local neighbourhood plan for their Council ward. This details what and where development  can be promoted within the area. (More….)

Local HMO Register

Houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) are houses let to 3 or more unrelated individuals. There are strict planning regulations about the number of HMOs allowed in any area and a statutory licensing scheme for HMOs with 5 or more occupants on 3 or more storeys. Council needs to know where HMOs are in order to assess their impact on a neighbourhood and to decide planning applications for conversion of family homes to HMO use, but currently has no register. OBRA  would like to compile a local register of HMOs to help with this process. If you know of any HMOs in your neighbourhood, please do let us know the addresses.

Council is rolling out a scheme for compulsory licencing of all HMOs across the city. The scheme currently covers 8 city wards; Bargate, Bassett, Bevois, Freemantle, Portswood, Millbrook, Shirley and Swaythling. Clearly, this proposal (if effectively managed and enforced) will bring significant benefit both to tenants living in poorly maintained and managed HMO properties and also to occupants of neighbouring properties.

Compulsory licensing of all HMOs in Bassett came into force on 20th October 2015. (More.…).

Download the OBRA guide to using the Council’s online Planning Portal (pdf).