Building for the future: Church holds housing development conference

Published: Monday August 17, 2020

Building strong communities where all people can flourish has been the passion of the Church of England for nearly 1,500 years.

On 29 September, the Diocese of Gloucester is holding a conference called ‘Living with Beauty: promoting health, well-being and sustainable growth’, to discuss the findings of the ‘Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission’, published in February of this year.

Planners, developers and communities are invited to join Gail Mayhew, who sat on the Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission, Charlie Dugdale, Partner at Knight Frank, and the Bishop of Tewkesbury, the Rt Revd Robert Springett, to discuss the implications of the report.

Bishop Robert said, “At a time when more housebuilding is being promoted, we are committed to working creatively with communities, planners and developers to help ensure that where development is right, it is done in the best and most responsible way.

“We want to see houses become homes, and homes join together to form community in which all people may flourish. This seminar is an opportunity to listen and to contribute to the future shaping of our communities. I am delighted that Gail Mayhew and Charlie Dugdale are able to be with us.”

Gail said, “Our proposals aim for long-term investment in which the values that matter to people – beauty, community, history, landscape – are safeguarded. We argue for making great places the objective of planning; greater democratic involvement in planning decisions, and for a new model of long-term stewardship as the precondition for large developments. Through prioritising place, local empowerment and a patient long-term investment approach, we believe that a transformation of communities and places across the country can be effected, learning from the experience of Covid and responding to the challenge of creating more sustainable and resilient places.

“We advocate a radical programme for the greening of our towns and cities, for achieving environmental targets, and for regenerating abandoned places. The emerging environmental goals – durability, adaptability, biodiversity – are continuous with the pursuit of beauty, and the advocacy of beauty is the clearest and most efficient way forward for the planning system as a whole.”

For more information  and to book a place on Living with Beauty: promoting health, well-being and sustainable growth (29 September, 6pm) visit


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