Have your say on affordable housing in south Worcestershire

Councillors are to be asked to approve the launch of the first of four consultations on planning documents supporting the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP).

Residents and other interested parties will be asked for their views on guidelines for the building of affordable housing in south Worcestershire between now and 2030.

They will be asked to give their views on the Affordable Housing Supplementary Planning Document, designed to help developers, land owners and other interested parties who hope to build affordable housing under policies outlined in the SWDP.

The SWDP proposes that most new housing developments should include a proportion of affordable housing, such as shared ownership or rented accommodation normally managed by housing associations.

The Supplementary Planning Document will give detailed guidance on this, covering issues such as whether flats or houses should be built, how many bedrooms should be included, and the circumstances in which developers will have to make a financial contribution towards affordable housing being built away from their own developments.

The planning committees of the three councils preparing the SWDP – Malvern Hills, Worcester City and Wychavon – will each meet in the next few weeks to approve the launch of the consultation. If it gets the backing of all three, the consultation will start on 4 March 2016 for six weeks.

During that time responses to the consultation can be made at and printed copies of the consultation forms will also be available at customer service centres and libraries.

Guidance documents are also being prepared on three other important matters in the SWDP – the Community Infrastructure Levy, travellers’ and travelling showpeople’s sites, and developer contributions. Details of these are due to be released in the next few weeks.

The SWDP is currently the subject of an Examination by an independent Inspector, who is expected to publish his findings in the near future. It is hoped that the three councils can then move to formally adopt the Plan, providing a clear framework for sustainable development up to 2030 for south Worcestershire, with the emphasis on boosting the local economy and meeting housing needs.