Councillors have called on house-builders to improve the standard of locks on doors in new houses in Leeds.
The comments came during a meeting of Leeds City Council’s development plans panel, when housing standards were being discussed.
It was suggested that councillors on planning committees were being kept in the dark as to how secure new-build houses were.
Leader of Leeds City Council’s Conservatives group, Coun Andrew Carter (Calverley and Farsley) said:
“We should try to insist that developers can give an assurance of quality as to the doors on ground floor doors and windows.
“At the time of planning applications the cards are on our hands, and we should not throw those cards away.”
Chairing the meeting Coun Peter Gruen (Lab) agreed, adding:
“I have had nothing but trouble because developers have refused to implement snap proof locks. It is a matter of a few pounds to put them in.
“I ask the plans panel that we use our best endeavours to get that kind of security because it is exactly right to do so.”
A council officer told the meeting that, as the matter came under building regulations, it would not be in the remit of planning committees. He added:
“We should not be treading on the remit of other policy.
“But where we can put that pressure on as officers, we will look to do that.
“It does become a matter for people buying houses that through the information they request, that they are getting what they think they are playing for.
“If I were a homeowner, I would want to make sure the right locks were provided.”
Coun Barry Anderson (Con) said: “I accept what you say – it is not a planning matter – but what can be put in the report to bring it to the attention of plans panels?”
Coun Tom Leadley (MBI) added: “This is not a new thing. The best thing plans panels can do is publicise this, even if it’s not in our remit.
Coun Carter added:
“You have a duty of care at every level. If young people haven’t bought a house before, we have a responsibility to make sure we do everything we can to help them.
“We need to get all speculative house-builders to put the right sort of locks on their doors – bad publicity won’t be good for them.”