West Suffolk Housing strategy 2018-2024
The Housing strategy team is involved with looking at the housing needs across the area both now and in the future. The team uses data supplied by government, the census and from the housing register to assess these needs. Sometimes additional survey work is undertaken and local plans are carried out by parish councils from time to time.
The information is used closely with the planning team to identify where housing that meets the needs of our communities will be built. One of the biggest problems faced is finding suitable sites on which to build. Given the rural nature of the area, some small edge of village settlements is always needed to sustain our villages and prevent young people having to move away. Let us know if you are aware of any small pieces of land near villages that might be suitable.
West Suffolk Council has produced a housing strategy that sets out what we, together with our partners will be doing between 2018 to 2023 to improve the housing situation for our current and future residents.
The actions within the strategy will directly contribute to the overall sense of community and wellbeing of West Suffolk. Considerations include enabling the supply of new housing; making the best use of existing housing; and offering support or specialist housing to those who need it.
Mid-term review: Addendum to the Housing Strategy and revised Implementation Plan
The Housing Strategy and Implementation Plan were adopted by Cabinet in December 2018. As is good practice, regular reviews have been carried out since then. A mid-term review was undertaken in 2021. As a result, an addendum to the Housing Strategy, adopted by Cabinet in December 2021, provides an update to the Housing Strategy 2018-2023. It sets out significant policy changes and events that have taken place since the Housing Strategy was first adopted. The life of the strategy was also extended to 2024.
The actions in the Housing Strategy are progressed through the Implementation Plan that identifies the main tasks needed to increase and improve the provision of appropriate housing over the life of the strategy. As part of the mid-term review, we looked in detail at the actions contained in the Implementation Plan. It was concluded that the housing priorities remain relevant, however, some changes were made to the actions and these are detailed in the link provided below. Furthermore, progress against the Implementation Plan is also included.
You can view our policy:
Other housing strategies and plans include:
- Discharge of homelessness duty into the private rented sector
- Lettings Policy
- Homelessness Reduction and Rough Sleeping Strategy
The adopted Local Plan for St Edmundsbury Borough Council and emerging plans for Forest Heath District Council (and all related policy documents, including guidance and SPDs) will continue to apply to those parts of the West Suffolk Council area until a new Local Plan for West Suffolk is adopted. This is currently scheduled for mid-2023.
Enabling is the strategy team working with a range of partners in the public and private sector who may be able to help us provide homes. The majority of these homes are likely to be built for various forms of home ownership, allowing people to meet their aspirations. Others will be for rent in the social sector for those who cannot afford to buy in the open housing market.
Enabling is not only about building new properties. We also work with owners to bring empty homes back into use. We also look at converting unused or under used properties into smaller units so that we can provide more homes for people to live in.