For example, how many of the extra 48,000 to 53,000 houses they want the developers to build are intended for an increased population of in-migrants; how many are the result of household changes in the currently resident population; and how many will be bought by second home owners?
You have to look quite hard to find mention of the latter. However, tucked away in the lists of laughable reasons provided to legitimate the Council’s plans for excessive growth in each community network area, we can find references to second homes. Well, not actually second home owners as such, but ‘temporary residents’. How convenient. This newly coined term gives them a status more equal to us ‘permanent residents’.
But I can reveal that in more than half the community network areas (10 out of 19) competition from ‘temporary residents’ is pushing up the numbers of houses being built.
In Wadebridge and Padstow the problem of second homes can hardly be ignored. Padstow is described as ‘a popular second home location’ and the planners admit the horrifying fact that in this district
four out of ten homes are already occupied by temporary residents
Does this therefore explain the curious fact that, despite being the one area in Cornwall which has no predicted population growth, there is still a ‘need’ for 800 more houses over the next 20 years? It would be nice to know how many of these 800 are earmarked for second homes. But sadly we’re not told.
In West Penwith there is also
a significant level of competition between permanent and temporary residents … and the growth figure chosen will need to accommodate this level of competition
Which means that more houses have to be built to cater for the second home market.
A similar unquantified ‘need’ to accommodate second home owners appears at St Agnes, St Blazey, Fowey and Lostwithiel, Liskeard and Looe and at Camelford. In the last of these there is
a great deal of competition
At Helston and the Lizard
households … face higher levels of competition than on average … from prospective second home owners
While at Bude
residents in this area face a great deal of competition for housing from the second and holiday home market and the growth level chosen will have to take this into account
Meanwhile, at Hayle and St Ives
there is great deal of competition from second home owners … and the number of new houses developed will need to accommodate this aspect of need
‘Aspect of need’???? This implies that the phrase ‘housing need’ tossed around with such abandon by the Core Strategy and its apologists includes the ‘need’ to build second homes for ‘temporary residents’, not to mention all those unaffordable homes for new permanent residents. Obviously, this is not something Cornwall Council wants to make a big fuss about. But the next time you hear Kaczmarek and co wittering on about meeting ‘local need’ remember that their definition of this includes second homes and in-migration.