I read with interest the article on affordable homes by your political editor Joshua Powling.
Read Joshua Powling’s article – No affordable homes built at all in Adur for second time in three years
I am deeply concerned about the long-term impacts on the Shoreham/Lancing area of recent local housing decisions. Whilst the news that 15 council flats are to be built in Southwick is to be welcomed, in the context of no social housing having been built in Adur for 30 years, it is alarming. On top of which, his article stated that no affordable housing was completed in Adur for the second time in two years.
What has happened to the developer’s obligation under planning rules to provide 30 per cent affordable homes (Ignoring the vexed debate on whether 80 per cent of market rate in south east England is affordable)?
The number of households on the council housing register in Adur at the beginning of last year was 899.
Planning permission for developments of flats for private sale or rental flourish along Shoreham’s river bank. New Monks Farm only offers a tiny fraction of social housing compared to the overall number of houses.
Coast to Capital’s strategic plan states that people who work in this area are less likely to be able to afford to live here compared to residents who commute out for higher paid jobs. Further, wages for the local workforce are in line with the national average but below other local enterprise partnerships in the south east.
The average house price to earnings ratio in England is 7.7 but across this area the ratio is between 8.1 to 16.2.
It also states some demographic changes. The population is expected to grow faster than the wider south east or England with the 65-plus age group expected to grow by 68 per cent.
Older people need carers and services and where are these working people expected to live?
It seems to me we have precious little development space, a Tory council that accepted unrealistic national house building targets, serious issues with infrastructure all of which is leading to new housing for the wealthier.
My concern is: is this producing a form of unintentional social cleansing with local working people pushed further and further away from amenities and places of work and less and less opportunities to be securely housed in a meaningful way?
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