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Backlash against second homes gathers pace in the South West

Another fishing village prepares to ban outsiders buying new-builds in a bid to create affordable homes for locals.

Nigel Lewis

The backlash against second homes continues after campaigners within the village of Mevagissey in Cornwall submitted plans to block outsiders buying new-builds to use as holiday homes in the picturesque fishing port.

The move follows the Chancellors move in his Autumn budget two years ago to increase Stamp Duty on properties bought as second homes by an additional 1%, and three other villages and towns which have also introduced new-build bans.

In Cornwall these include – most famously – the coastal community of St Ives but also St Minver and Rame Peninsula, and Lynton in Devon.

In a recent poll of Megavissey residents by the county council, 56% said they didn’t want to see any more housing within the parish, 74% said they would support restricting the number of holiday or second homes being bought within the village, with only 16 opposed to such moves.

Development plan

In Mevagissey locals have included the new rules within the village’s Neighbourhood Development Plan or NDP, which must be then approved by Cornwall Council.

Holiday homes make up a quarter of the village’s property market, and its average price according to Rightmove is £299,587, nearly £50,000 more than the Cornish average of £250,000, and 20 times the local average wage of £15,458.

Once signed off by Cornwall Council, the NDP will then return to Mevagissey to be voted on by local residents.

“In Cornwall we sadly are suffering from the erosion of our coastal and rural communities by what can be seen as an unstoppable onslaught of second-home owners,” says the country’s Conservative councillor for Mevagissey John Mustoe.

October 2, 2017

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