Should Sidmouth be building more social housing?
The Sid Valley Neighbourhood Plan would like to see more:
And there has been a lot of discussion locally:
Futures Forum: A solution to our housing problems: build social housing
Futures Forum: A solution to our housing problems > allow councils to consolidate their assets under an urban wealth fund > to build social housing
Futures Forum: A solution to our housing problems: build more council houses
It’s now 100 years since the Housing and Town Planning Act. “Known as the Addison Act, after the then minister of health, the new legislation provided councils with subsidies to build houses in areas where there was high demand.”
Here’s part of a long read from the BBC:
When council estates were a dream
Many people in society – including too many politicians – continue to look down on social housing and, by extension, the people who call it their home
Four decades ago councils were responsible for 40% of new houses. By 2017 that had fallen to just 2%. Right to buy and the transfer of council properties to housing associations meant a depletion in stock.
Most social housing in England now belongs to housing associations – 2.5 million as opposed to 1.6 million council homes. But there are still some who believe that councils could play a big role in tackling the housing crisis, just as they did a century ago.
At the tail end of 2018, Prime Minister Theresa May announced that the borrowing cap that had hampered councils from building in large numbers was being lifted. She said the stigma about council houses was wrong. She regretted the fact that tenants could “feel marginalised and overlooked, and are ashamed to share the fact that their home belongs to a housing association or local authority”. “On the outside, many people in society – including too many politicians – continue to look down on social housing and, by extension, the people who call it their home.”
The need is obvious. An Ipsos Mori survey for the Chartered Institute of Housing found 60% of people supported the construction of new social housing in their area.
Not everybody agrees that councils and housing associations should drive a new wave of housebuilding. There are many who think that changing the planning system and reducing bureaucracy would let private builders produce many more houses and flats.
But whatever the solution, what is clear is that in 2019, the UK faces a shortage of houses and a crisis. Just as it did in 1919.