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Housing Delivery Test action plan approved in Welwyn Hatfield

Words: Laura Edgar
Small housing development / iStock: 172246561

Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council has approved the action plan required after failing to deliver at least 95 per cent of the housing it needs under the Housing Delivery Test.

As part of the work to develop the action plan, the council estimates that the Housing Delivery Test for 2019 will be about 72 per cent, based on initial housing completions for April 2018 to March 2019.

It is likely to deliver 1,454 completed homes against a need of 2,033 homes.

The action plan states: “This indicates that the council will have to prepare another action plan by August 2020 and apply a 20 per cent buffer to our five-year housing land supply."

The results of the government's first Housing Delivery Test were published in March 2019 but, according to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), should have been published in November 2018. It is calculated by dividing the total number of net homes delivered over a three-year period by the total number of homes required over a three-year period. The 2018 test considers 2015/16, 2016/17 and 2017/18.

The council does not have a recently adopted plan – it is currently at the public examination stage. The government’s local housing need figures were instead used in the Housing Delivery Test.

The council has identified the following key actions to improve housing delivery:

  • Continue to determine planning applications for housing schemes as fast as reasonably possible.
  • Continue to consider the necessity of planning conditions for housing permissions.
  • Progress the adoption of the local plan.
  • Creating a housing company that will be better able to delivery other forms of social rent that are desirable and affordable for local residents.

More information on the action plan can be found on the council website. The decision can be viewed here.

Image credit | iStock