Change to age old trespass laws could allow frackers to drill under your home

In a consultation published by DCLG on 23rd May 2014, the Government outlined their proposals to change the age old trespass laws encapsulated by the latin phrase: Cuius est solum, eius est usque ad coelum et ad inferos. In other words, “whoever owns the soil, it is theirs all the way up to Heaven and down to Hell”…
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Mental Disabilities and ASTs analysed by Court of Appeal in latest ECHR case

Ref. McDonald v McDonald [2014] EWCA Civ 1049
In the recent case of McDonald v McDonald [2014], the Court of Appeal has ruled that a possession order granted to a company of receivers in the guise of the private landlord of an AST was not in breach of Article 8 of the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR) – despite the tenant having a serious disorder that makes her upset by environmental changes…
To read the whole article, click here.

Bats dying from the Bends due to Wind Turbines…

Wind turbines are killing batsBats are one of the animals most frequently found dead near wind turbines. New research into the cause of death has discovered that it is not just flying into the massive blades that kills the animals, as conservationists have previously thought…
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Gas Safety Trust Poll Provides Alarming Results

The Gas Safety Trust instructed OnePoll to conduct an online survey of some 2,000 people to ascertain whether property owners and tenants had any idea of the dangers of gas equipment. The results were fairly disturbing…
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Controversial report by the RIBA highlights that 80% of school buildings should not be in use and threatens Green Belt land

A recent report carried out by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has indicated that 80% of current school buildings should no longer be operational. The same report controversially suggests that building must begin on the green belt to solve the housing crisis…
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Wind Turbine Increases

wind_turbinesIt has been reported over the last month that the number of wind turbines in Britain has dramatically risen to around 30,000 after increasing by some 13% last year.
Regardless, a number of indicators are indicating a decline in the popularity of such schemes and questions are being asked about what might replace wind in the coming years as the country’s go-to ‘green energy’ type…
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Building on Floodplains – Can this continue?

With much of the South West underwater, flooding has once again become a hot-topic. We look in one of our monthly articles at the huge range of questions the Government and its agencies much ask themselves if flooding is ever to be nullified as an issue of great concern for British homeowners…

Here’s a few questions we raise:

Britain has a substantial housing shortage – so where do we build? On green belt protected land? Urban sprawl across our green and pleasant land? That wasn’t well received when Nick Boles proposed to relax green belt regulations.

Should innovation be encouraged to create houses that are watertight up to first floor level? Should it be made a planning condition for developments on flood plains with a flood in the last 10 years to construct watertight houses up to a certain standard? What about a government competition for architects and building product designers to come up with the best solution?

Read the whole article and join the debate here.

Half the families in some estates can’t afford to heat their homes  – MORE than half the families in some estates can’t afford to heat their homes, a poll reveals.

54 per cent of households are reportedly too skint to stay warm at Humber and Trent Towers in worst-hit Nechells, Birmingham. Jobless labourer Michael Simpson, 45, lives there on £63 a week — and a quarter of that goes on fuel.

The city’s Wye Cliff Road area has 53.5 per cent of families facing a similar crisis. Nottingham was third on the list, with 52.9 per cent shivering at two high-rise blocks in the Lenton area.

As Energy prices rise more than 10%, can they be justified and what is the solution? Depends on who you ask…

What's behind the energy price hikes?

Consumers have in recent weeks been hit by price rises of up to 11.1 per cent – equating to between £100-200 extra per year on the typical household’s fuel bill. A number of the “Big Six” energy firms have claimed that the increases are because of rising wholesale prices, but recent data doesn’t support this.

Statistics released from Ofgem, the energy regulator, suggests that wholesale prices rose by only 1.7 per cent over the last year – a mere fraction of the levels energy companies are attempting to justify. The figures will undoubtedly prompt fury across the country as homeowners prepare for winter and questions are aksed as to what the real reason is for these rises?

We look into the issues, the real reasons and potential solutios here…

Foxes, hares and rabbits all in decline – but deers boom

urban foxes - a dying breed?Despite frequent tales of the deviance and destruction wrought by urban foxes and a strong media presence concerned with explaining, educating and protecting against their impact, a new study in the European Journal of Wildlife Research has shown that numbers in the UK are actually down by 20% in the last two decades.

This is despite the hunting ban of 2004 . Deer numbers, on the other hand, are exploding – with 181% growth for Reeve’s muntjac and 89% for fallow deer.