Councils exceeding their housing targets, report says


Authorities in Suffolk and north Essex are meeting their housing targets. - Credit: Pixabay

Local authorities in Suffolk are exceeding their targets for new homes, according to latest figures released by the Government. 

All councils in the Suffolk and north Essex area were building more houses than required in the Housing Delivery Test 2020-2021, released by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities. 

Top performers included Babergh District Council, which delivered 1,399 homes against a target of 994, while in Mid Suffolk 1,985 houses were built compared to a requirement of 1,450. 

West Suffolk Council achieved a figure of 2,622 new builds against a target of 2,049, while in East Suffolk 170 extra homes were completed, a total of 2,470 compared to the required 2,300. 

The target figure is the expected number of homes to be built over a three-year period, while the actual figure is the total number of homes completed during that timescale. 

In the east of England as a whole, 36.4% of planning authorities failed to meet their minimum housing targets, with 11 authorities delivering less than 75% of their housing need. 

A spokesperson for East Suffolk Council said: "Our aim, as set out in the East Suffolk Housing Strategy, is to increase the supply of housing to meet a range of needs, while getting the most out of existing homes and working in partnership to support successful communities, regeneration and economic development. 

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"We also seek to ensure that we deliver the necessary infrastructure alongside housing growth through our Community Levy Spend and requirements on developers for specific sites.  

"Good delivery of housing assists in terms of the number of affordable homes delivered in the district and in the council's ability to resist developments on less sustainable unplanned-for sites. 

"The council's two Local Plans, covering the former Suffolk Coastal and Waveney areas, include a range of housing sites and provide up-to-date clarity for developers in delivering housing. 

"We independently prepare an annual Housing Action Plan as part of our proactive approach to housing delivery, including actions to support housing delivery." 

Rico Wojtulewicz, head of housing and planning policy at the National Federation of Builders, which represents construction, said: “The east of England has become a London commuter region and this has increasingly made housing unaffordable.  

“More than a third of its councils have failed to deliver enough housing and it needs immediate investment in housing, business and regional connectivity.”