The East Riding of Yorkshire Council (ERYC) is one of 47 Councils across the country that will receive a share of £127 million of funding to build council homes. The ERYC received the largest allocation of funding in the country and proposes to build 275 new affordable homes. These dwellings will be in many communities with identified need, four of which to be built in Holme on Spalding Moor (HOSM) were on the agenda for the ERYC's Western Area planning committee this week.
I spoke in favour of the proposal and supported HOSM Parish Council in their recommendation for approval, and I’m pleased to say the planning committee agreed and granted planning permission.
One issue constantly being raised by Howdenshire residents is that of affordable housing. It is increasingly difficult for young people to find accommodation in rural villages such as HOSM because of both availability and cost.
At the present moment, East Riding of Yorkshire Council has 58 applications on the waiting list for houses in Holme on Spalding Moor and a further 239 applicants requesting consideration for re-housing into the village as one of their areas of choice. But the council has just 45 properties in the village – almost all occupied.
In areas such as HOSM, where homes are required, much new affordable housing is linked to new housing developments where a proportion of those new houses are affordable. But this can mean that unless there is allocated building land in the village, there is little scope for building the required affordable properties. This can be overcome by working in partnership with specialist affordable housing providers who can build on Green Field sites but this can also be difficult.
Gaining this dispensation is dependant on the communities bidding for affordable housing to match the identified need – those villages that want to grow by allowing children to leave home to live alone or with spouses/partners, without leaving their communities to do so. In this application there was no bidding process – the money had already been obtained by the ERYC.
Affordable housing required could be a mixture of not just rented accommodation, but also Homebuy shared ownership – which means young people, who would not have the opportunity to conventionally get onto the first rung of the property ladder, then have the opportunity through this shared ownership – paying part rent and part mortgage.
Allowing young people to remain in the villages in which they grew up is a very important element of community cohesion in most rural settlements. This is why it is important that local people, such as the HOSM Parish Council, who, through the Parish Plan, have identified the housing requirements of residents, are key in the decision making on affordable housing.
The provision of affordable housing can only improve the village by allowing people to live and stay in their own community, and I fully support Parish Council in what they are doing in this area.
So, in a nutshell, the East Riding of Council has received funding to build a number of dwellings in communities with identified need and the Western Area Planning Committee supported the officer’s recommendation and approved the application for ‘affordable housing for local people in Holme on Spalding Moor’