Alresford Action Plan

HOUSING

Nursery Road
The housing group sought to undertake a "bottom up" exercise involving local people and intended to help decision makers reach an understanding of the needs and aspirations of people who live in Alresford. The housing study does not constitute a finished plan. It describes options as a basis for consultation. The group assumed that there will be only natural and organic growth in the next few years and that the objective is to achieve a better balance of housing supply, within, or largely within, the current settlement boundary. Alresford has seen rapid growth in the 1960s but relatively little new build in the last decade, most of which has been on a small scale. There are no significant opportunities for new significant development within the existing urban boundary. It is encouraging to see a relatively high level of maintenance of the housing stock with considerable refurbishment, improvement and extensions.

The Winchester City Council's Performance Plan 2003-2004 included a key target to produce 200 units of affordable housing for rent or shared ownership within the Winchester district. It defined affordable homes as "homes which are available for rent at a reasonable level or are low cost open market housing. They include housing which is specifically provided, and permanently retained, for the benefit of local households currently unable to afford to rent or buy housing appropriate to meet their needs locally on the open market."

In addition to the need for affordable housing future plans should take account of the needs of the elderly so far as sheltered housing provision is concerned. This action plan has not studied this issue and further work may be initiated by the Action Group.

The New Alresford Town Council is currently preparing a design statement and is recommending that developments of 5 or more properties should contain a minimum of 20% affordable dwellings and those developments of over 15 properties should have 35% affordable dwellings.

Housing Recommendations

From the work undertaken by the group and consultations with special interest groups and the people of Alresford the following critical issues have been identified:

 

Actions/Recommendations

Lead Body

Priority

The primary need is for affordable housing which may require some element of public subsidy. 

Winchester City Council (WCC) with NATC

1

The lowest rung on the housing ladder is at a relatively high cost level and the gaps between the rungs have widened, making "trading up" more costly. 

WCC with NATC

1

Demand is at high level for almost all categories of housing. 

WCC with NATC

1

Alresford is at risk of losing its attraction as a community for families as the current generation of young job seekers are forced out of the town due to high cost and lack of affordable housing. 

WCC with NATC

1

If it is agreed that more affordable housing is a priority there must be an acceptance that land inside or immediately adjoining the urban boundary must be identified. 

WCC with NATC

 1

Affordable housing is often built as a result of planning authority pressure on private developers.  However it is felt that public funding for this social housing needs to be made available. 

Central Government with WCC/HCC/

 1

Means must be found to ensure that new affordable housing remains affordable and is available for local key workers and local families.

WCC

1

Affordable housing need should not be met by new estates of low cost housing on the edge of town - mixed development close to the centre is preferred. 

WCC with NATC

 1

In the historic core of the town efforts should be made to conserve the elements of the medieval town. 

AS with NATC/ WCC

 1

The open spaces, recreation grounds and school playing fields are an important part of the town and should not be considered as potential development sites. 

NATC with WCC

 1

There are places where a number of neighbouring small garden plots could be joined together, e.g. to the north of Grange Road which should be subject to a development scheme.

NATC with WCC

2
Properties behind the Hankin's site and the West Street shops, could, if linked together, would provide space for town centre mixed development. 

NATC with WCC

1


Introduction

Economy

Environment

Transport

Facilities

alsford