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Campaigners have backed the Princess Royal for challenging the development of large-scale new towns and instead highlighting the benefits of limited expansion of rural villages.
The Campaign to Protect Rural England welcomed her intervention, saying it was important to have a "living countryside" with villages which grew "organically".
Princess Anne has advocated small-scale developments in villages, rather than 'big estates' as a solution to the rural housing crisis, according to The Telegraph.
Speaking just weeks after the Coalition discussed plans for two new garden cities, the Princess Royal entered the debate over Britain's housing shortage by asking planners if it was "really necessary" to build developments of up to 15,000 new houses.
Instead, small developments of between six and 12 homes could be scattered villages to make up the same number, she said.
She said: “Our battle is to argue the toss with real house builders that this has real value - and some local authorities, frankly, who would much rather invest in a large scale development.
“Maybe it isn't such good value if you have to build in the facilities that need to go with it".