Department for Abolishing Golf

We have over 11,000 acres of Golf Courses in London, let's use it for your new home instead.

You can live here!

Golf Courses in London

  • There are 131 Golf Courses in London, half of which are owned by the UK Government and Local Councils already.
  • As a thought experiment, developing all golf courses London into low density housing would provide 178,850 houses
  • These houses would be located in high quality green space, low densities of housing could still preserve up to half of the space as public open green space
  • By encouraging public transport and active travel and banning car parking, traffic impact would be minimal

About the Department

The Department for Abolishing Golf is a call to convert underused golf courses into high quality garden villages with housing for you and your family

Housing Potential in Golf Courses

Hover/click on the red golf course areas to see the potential population they can provide

  • London Boundary
  • Within 12 minutes walk of a rail station
  • Golf Courses

Housing Need

The 2017 London Strategic Housing Market Assessment states that 65,900 new homes a year are needed to sufficently house Londoners. This is a combination of:

  • Children growing up and moving out
  • People moving to London from other parts of the UK
  • People who cannot afford to rent or buy
  • People who are in overcrowded homes and need more suitably spaced accomodation

If these targets are not met:

  • Younger people are unable to move out of the family home, or will live in shared accomodation for most of their adult life
  • House prices and rents will grow excessively high and out of reach for most Londoners
  • Economic growth is reduced, as a large amount of spending money is taken up by housing costs
  • Jobs growth is reduced, as workers cannot move into the city
  • Pressures from housing costs increases the risks of poverty and homelessness

The reason why home prices and rents are so high and targets for building are not being met, are caused by various factors:

  • Non-market homebuilding (through councils etc) went from providing 50% of new homes in the 1960s, to under 1% today.
  • During this time however, the private homebuilding market never picked up the slack, homebuilding is therefore only around half what it was in the 1960s, despite the population continuing to grow
  • This has created a fundamental failure in the home market to provide houses for the UK population, demand overwhelms supply and therefore prices are driven up
  • Due to the relative scarcity of homes. Homes and properties are now used as speculative investments rather than only for their main use
  • This speculation is not limited by availability of cash, because there is a nearly endless amount of money available created through debt, mortgages and loans
  • This speculation makes properties -and the land they sit on- cost more than their fundamental value as a house or a shop etc
  • This creates a large amount of speculative wealth which requires continued scarcity and unaffordability of homes, this makes many property owners oppose further development of properties

For more details on how the housing market works in the UK read Prospects for land, rent and housing in UK cities by the Government Office for Science.

Golf in London

In England golf participation rates are falling, according to the Golf Participation Report for Europe 2018 only 1.19% of people play golf. However 3% (48681 km2) of London is taken up by golf courses.

Golf courses -despite their natural appearance- have significant negative environmental impacts, they require large amounts of water, energy and space to maintain.

At a conservative low residential density of 3,500 homes per km2, there is enough space for at least 170,000 houses on this land. This is the equivalent of at least 2.7 years of housing need for London. These homes can house nearly 1,000,000 people that need it.

So, abolish golf in London, get a new home!

Read More

An excellent and more thorough analysis of the housing potential is here The Golf Belt

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