APRIL 2023


Get your free tickets to

Firstly, I am delighted to announce that I will be speaking at Grand Designs Live, an biannual exhibition and conference event that takes place in London in the spring and in Birmingham in the autumn. The London event will take place between 29th April and 7th May 2023, and I have been invited to speak at 1pm on the Bank Holiday Monday 1st May 2023. You can obtain free tickets by clicking on the logo below and using the code GDLTRE23


How to Claim Your Right to Build

I was invited to give the Grand Designs Live talk after writing an article titled "How to Claim Your Right to Build" which you can read by clicking on the button below. The article highlights the fact that there has recently been a number of successful planning appeals based on unmet demand for self build and custom housebuilding. The talk will expand on this subject. 


Introducing Planning Consultant, Andy Moger

During the Grand Designs Live talk, I will be joined by planning consultant, Andy Moger of Tetlow King Planning. Andy has developed a specialism in self build and custom housebuilding (CSB) and has been involved in a number of successful planning appeals based on unmet demand for CSB housing. Andy also sits of the Government funded Right to Build Task Force and has been involved in the review of relevant legislation.


Check out the Help Planning Help Podcast

Andy was recently interviewed on an episode  of Ben Adam Smith’s excellent podcast, House Planning Help, titled "What is a Planning Consultant" in which Andy explains the role of a planning consultant and the benefits they can bring to a project. 


We created a Map of Custom Build Sites in the UK

Custom Build is a form of housing procurement where a developer facilitates the involvement of future owner occupiers in the design and construction of their own home. There are different approaches to Custom Build with varying levels of end user involvement and flexibility, but in general Custom Build involves a developer obtaining planning permission of a number of serviced plots of a site and then selling these plots (with access and services already installed) to individual self builders. This model of housing procurement is fairly new to the UK but it growing, and therefore we decided to create a map to track the number of developments and plots being brought forward through out the UK. 

There are different approaches to Custom Build with varying levels of end user involvement and flexibility and we have therefore colour coded each custom build site by category including: Serviced Plots – with full flexibility, Serviced Plots with nominated designer, build system, and/or main contractor; Serviced Plots – with a Golden Brick foundation, Shell Homes for fit out by the self builder, and Customisable Homes where the purchaser can customise the design of home built by the developer.

If you are an aspiring self builder, but are struggling to find a suitable site, we invite you to browse our Custom Build Map to see whether there is a custom build development in your area.


Top 10 Talks

I  have just found out, whilst writing this newsletter, that the my upcoming talk titled "How to Claim Your Right to Build" has been described as one of the 10 top talks at Grand Designs Live that you don’t want to miss. You can read a summary of the talk by clicking on the image below and we hope to see you there.


About the author

Oliver Murray is a Cambridge-based Architect and Self Build Coach who specialises in High-Performance Self-Build Homes and provides Self Build Coaching alongside his architectural services to help his clients progress through their self build journeys with clarity and confidence. If you are interested in working with us, you can book a Getting Started Consultation by clicking on the photo below. This is a 45 minute online video call during which you will have a chance to speak directly with Oliver about your self build aspirations and how you can get started.

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Supporting custom and self build