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Community groups tackle Oxford’s housing problems

25th May 2016

A housing group is hoping to achieve a UK ‘first’ with a novel way of addressing Oxford’s affordable housing shortage. A coalition of community-led housing groups have joined forces and plan to tackle the eye-watering house prices, which now cost sixteen times the average income for the city. Homes for Oxford (an alliance between local community-led housing groups Oxfordshire Community Land Trust, Oxford Cohousing, Kindling Housing Co-op and Happy House) submitted its proposal...

Hospital is homes lifeline

25th May 2016

A hospital conversion is pitched as prescribing a panacea to London’s acute housing crisis, writes Bill Tanner. London Community Land Trust - the first urban community land trust (CLT) in the UK - is building 23 homes for low-cost ownership as part of a 252-dwelling, award-winning redevelopment of the former St Clements hospital, Mile End. Applications for the homes - to be completed in stages through 2016 and due to be ready to buy in August - are now closed, with sale prices linked to local ...

'Three houses per day' new homes pledge

24th May 2016

A South England housing group has pledged to build 9,500 new homes by 2023. Aster Group is promising to build around 1,350 homes each year for the next seven years – putting its future production of new homes at the same level as many major regional housebuilders. Amanda Williams, group development director for Aster, says: “We have been working extensively to re-shape our business, switching our focus to concentrate more than ever on developing new homes. “Building 9,500 new homes between...

New community for Nottinghamshire brownfield site

23rd May 2016

Keepmoat has the go-ahead to build over 1,000 new homes on a 33-hectate brownfield site in Nottinghamshire. The first phase of the development at Chase Farm, Gedling, will see 506, two, three, four and five bedroom family houses - creating a new community with green corridors linking existing residential areas along Arnold Lane into Gedling Country Park. The brownfield land at Chase Farm has long been identified as a site which will help Gedling Council meet the borough’s housing needs, a...

Orr: 'Queen's Speech gives us clarity'

19th May 2016

David Orr, chief executive, National Housing Federation, shares his thoughts on the Queen's Speech. The Queen’s Speech gave us a clear signal of where the government’s priorities lie when it comes to tackling the housing shortage, and provides more clarity for housing associations as the sector looks to continue its work with the government on this. Restating their commitment to building a million new homes shows us that we can’t let up on our work if we as a country are to ac...

Opinion: Small developments exempt from Section 106

17th May 2016

By Anne Dobie, Partner, Linder Myers Solicitors. The Court of Appeal made a landmark judgement, upholding the government’s decision to exempt developments of 10 houses or fewer from Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act. The original policy, which was introduced in 2014, was established to ensure the burden of affordable housing contributions did not fall on small-scale developers, including self-builders. The latest decision upholds this policy, and means that local authoriti...

Sadiq slams Boris over new housing audit

17th May 2016

London’s new mayor, Sadiq Khan, has slammed his predecessor Boris Johnson for “letting Londoners down” over affordable homes, with sites like 10 Downing Street, City Hall, and British Museum found to be listed for future housing development, writes Bill Tanner. On taking office, Khan tasked officials to an urgent audit of City Hall’s preparedness to tackle the housing crisis. That audit – out this week - revealed what the Khan camp calls the “massi...

DCLG brings in regen consultant

16th May 2016

A consultant from a private sector outsourcing firm is to advise the DCLG on regeneration. The government advisory panel led by Lord Heseltine has appointed Paul Clark, head of development consultancy and agency at GL Hearn, to “to help shape a national estate regeneration strategy.” The former Tory deputy prime minister has been advising on the government’s regeneration plans and was given the brief of developing the Thames estuary. Chancellor George Osbourne announced in t...

SME house builders boosted by Section 106 ruling

12th May 2016

The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) has welcomed the decision to waive affordable housing requirements for small developments. Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, praised the ruling, commenting: “We welcome the Appeal Court’s decision to confirm the government’s right to waive Section 106 affordable housing contributions for sites of ten units or fewer. “It’s widely recognised that if we are to tackle the long-term undersupply of new homes in this country,...

Opinion - Giving brownfield development the green light

12th May 2016

By William Kirk, Landmark Information Group Meeting increased housing demand through building on brownfield land has been a topical theme in the development sector over recent years.  While policies of ‘brownfield first’ and government targets for new housing development were abandoned at the start of the decade, a raft of new policies and interventions are now in the process of being rolled out.  Some have been more controversial than others, however they are all ultima...

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