Developer adds nine homes to make proposed housing site 100 per cent affordable

The application is due to be discussed next week by Daventry District Council
The application is due to be discussed next week by Daventry District Council

A housing developer is hoping to add more affordable homes to its proposed site next to Buckton Fields.

Futures Homescape Ltd has outline planning permission to build 32 homes at the site, which runs along the A5199 Welford Road in Boughton.

But it has submitted a reserved matters application which provides details on layout and scale, but also features an additional nine residential units to take the total up to 41.

The revised scheme would feature ten affordable rent dwellings, 15 ‘Right to Buy’ properties and 16 shared ownership homes - making all the units 'affordable'.

Daventry District Council planning officers have recommended that councillors approve the scheme when the planning committee meets next Wednesday (April 3), despite the development contravening planning policy by not offering a ‘mix’ of homes.

The planning office writes in papers which will be seen by the councillors: “The applicant is an established registered housing provider and maintains that the proposed tenure mix is required to address demand and housing need in the locality.

“A case is made that there is evidence of an undersupply in regards to affordable housing in the locality, which includes Northampton Borough, as the site is deemed to come within the Northampton Development Area (NDA) and that there is support from Northampton Borough Council who will have nomination rights on the scheme and who confirm their support of the proposed tenure mix. Additionally, it is noted that the scheme will be supported by Homes England.”

Futures Homescape argues that the ‘additional’ provision here will make up for the ‘loss’ of affordable housing on other nearby schemes where less than 35 per cent has been provided due to viability issues. The developer says this has reduced the number of affordable housing provided, namely elements of Buckton Fields and Dallington Grange.

A letter from the applicants to the council states: “Neither the Core Strategy nor the Housing SPD actually addresses the issue of potential overprovision of affordable housing, only prospective under-provision (if ‘justified’ by a viability exercise). It is concluded therefore that the delivery of the site as 100 per cent affordable is not contrary to either policy document.”

Developments of 100 per cent affordable homes are a rare sight at planning committee meetings, and no objections have been received from residents or the parish council in Boughton.

This proposal follows on from the grant of outline planning permission in 2015 after an appeal.