THE provision of two and three bedroom homes should be the main focus for new development in Lymm.
This is the conclusion of the Housing Needs Assessment undertaken by planning consultants AECOM on behalf of the Lymm Neighbourhood Plan Working Group.
Homes with four or more bedrooms are excluded from the recommended mix because they are already relatively well supplied.
However, the assessment cautions that to prevent the delivery of such homes altogether would not be practical, or help facilitate a balanced community.
In terms of types of dwellings required, the Assessment advises that the Lymm Neighbourhood Plan should promote the delivery of bungalows or other forms of age appropriate housing, in order to meet the needs of the aging population. An unmet demand for generally more affordable homes such as terraced houses has been identified and should also be addressed.
AECOM forecasts that the Affordable Housing needs of the community amount to 102 homes over the period to 2037. Its assessment concludes that, as long as 30% of new development is Affordable Housing, the WBC housing target for Lymm of 430 dwellings should be sufficient to meet local need.
AECOM state that there is a clear need for the relatively limited range of tenures in Lymm to be diversified away from homes for sale and weighted more towards options that are either currently affordable to most households such as Affordable Rent, or other options that may become more affordable when supplied in greater numbers or smaller sizes.
In terms of tenure split of Affordable Housing, the report recommends that provision should focus on dwellings for Social and Affordable Rent, with some provision for Shared Ownership.
“Local residents have concerns regarding affordability. The provision of a greater number of smaller homes for Affordable Rent and Shared Ownership will enable better opportunities and more options for people to access the housing market within Lymm” said Melanie Dwyer, Chair of the Housing sub-group of the Lymm Neighbourhood Plan Working Group.
Jonathan Foreman, Chairman of the Working Group, added: “It is important that the Lymm Neighbourhood Plan is based upon accurate and up to date information. Preparing planning policies which reflect AECOM’s recommendations will ensure the Plan addresses local housing priorities.”
Planning consultants AECOM, funded by the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government, have been commissioned to develop the evidence base for the Lymm Neighbourhood Plan.
The first report to be published was a Heritage and Character Assessment. The assessment reports on how the National Planning Policy Framework should be interpreted in the context of Lymm, helping to ensure future development does not damage Lymm’s Heritage and Character.
The Housing Needs Assessment develops the evidence base further by assessing the mix of types and sizes of dwellings required. It also identifies the Affordable Housing and other market tenures that are appropriate to meet local needs.
Both reports are available to download on the Lymm Neighbourhood Plan website www.lymmplan.org.