Role of industrial and logistics warehousing to be championed by new BPF Board

The British Property Federation has created an all-encompassing Warehouse Board to lobby national and local government to highlight the role Logistics and industrial warehousing plays as ‘essential national infrastructure’.

The board aims to bring together developers, owners, and occupiers to help shape Government policy and address long-term shortage of warehousing space.

The Board will engage with local and national government to highlight the vital role the warehousing sector has in delivering sustainable economic growth, creating essential and highly skilled job opportunities, and supporting customers reduce operational carbon emissions.

Working in collaboration with the BPF’s Executive team led by Melanie Leech and the existing BPF Industrial Committee, the BPF Warehousing Board will also review how the planning system could be adapted to address the structural shortage of warehouse space and build on the 2021 report ‘Levelling Up: The Logic of Logistics’ that examined how national planning policy and increased housing targets have restricted the development of space for the logistics sector for over a decade.

Andy Gulliford, Chair of the British Property Federation Warehousing Board, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic showed the critical but often unseen role logistics plays in our everyday lives and its importance to the national economy. However, the allocation of industrial land for other uses, inflexible planning policy and misperceptions around the nature of logistics employment means we are facing an acute shortage of warehouse space in many parts of the UK.”

Melanie Leech, Chief Executive, British Property Federation added: “Warehousing is essential national infrastructure but our research shows that demand for space has been underestimated in planning policy for at least a decade. We will continue to make the case to Government that we must plan more effectively for the delivery of warehouse space and encourage more creative thinking around how to accommodate this vital use in areas of high population growth and limited land availability. It is not only essential to ensuring we can all access the goods we need; it sits right at the heart of Government’s ambitions for growth across all areas of the country.”