The below Parliamentary question was asked by Geoffrey Cox on 2016-06-24.
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, if he will make an assessment of the effect of the Government’s housing policy on the ability of smaller housing applications in rural villages to succeed.
We believe that meeting the housing needs of rural communities is vitally important.
The National Planning Policy Framework rightly asks local planning authorities to identify and plan to meet the needs of their communities. It is for local planning authorities, in consultation with local people, to use their evidence base to ensure they plan to meet their housing need, shaping where development should and shouldn’t go, through an up to date Local Plan. Over 85,000 affordable homes have been provided in rural local authorities in England between April 2010 and March 2015.
Budget 2016 announced a £60 million fund to help bring forward community-led housing developments in rural and coastal communities. This fund will target those areas which are particularly affected by the impact of second homes. We will be announcing further details on how the fund will be allocated shortly.
The Homes and Communities Agency and my officials meet regularly with those working to deliver homes in rural communities to discuss the provision of affordable rural housing.