Lack of affordable housing was reported by 6 households as leading to a member of their family having to leave the village in the last 5 years.
Opinions are divided between those that want the total number of houses to remain the same (178 = 50%) and those that want some increase (134 = 37%).
Of those that saw a need for some development, conversion of existing buildings was the most acceptable option (212 people)
THE FOLLOWING IS AN UPDATE TAKEN FROM JUNE 2016 PARISH COUNCIL MINUTES:
AFFORDABLE HOUSING – MILES KING FROM MIDLAND RURAL HOUSING
The meeting was attended by Miles King from Midland Rural Housing (MRH) and Jill Sanderson from Strategic Housing at N&SDC. Miles King explained that his responsibility is to identify rural villages which have a need for affordable housing. This is done by asking all households in a village to complete a Housing Needs Survey which is then analysed by MRH and a report produced. A Housing Needs Survey was last carried out in Oxton in 2005 which is now out of date. If a survey shows that there is a need for affordable housing, the next step is to look for ‘exception’ sites (i.e. sites on which development would not usually be permitted by planners) on which to build properties aimed at rental or shared ownership by local people or those who have a connection to the village. The whole process can take years to complete.
Discussion took place regarding the concerns about current government policy which states that Housing Associations should give all residents a right to buy and how this might affect affordable housing schemes in the future. Also discussed was how the Housing Need Survey fits in with a neighbourhood plan and it was explained that a neighbourhood plan must incorporate a housing needs survey. Miles King confirmed that there would be no charge for this housing survey if it were undertaken this autumn 2016.
Jill Sanderson agreed to check with the planners and report to the Clerk if they are likely to allow any development at all in Oxton because this would affect whether or not it was worth going ahead with a survey.
A proposal to carry out a Housing Needs Survey (in possible conjunction with a Neighbourhood Plan) will be tabled for consideration at the July meeting.