Sunday 07 June 2020

Derbyshire Dales District Council: an award-winning approach in rural affordable housing delivery

The number one political and corporate priority for Derbyshire Dales District Council since 2002 has been the provision of new affordable homes. This political commitment has been backed up by the allocation of resources and a strong development team approach, leading to real success in local delivery.

In 2010 the Council reported:

“In gifting land worth £1.2 million and capital grants of £1.2 million we have achieved excellent value for money. The HCA has invested £40 million since 2003/04 yielding 569 new homes with 152 completed in 2009. A further 100 already have planning approval and will be completed in 2010. For every £1 we invest the HCA invests £16.60.”

The success of DDDC’s approach has been widely endorsed. The Derbyshire Dales Development Team – made up of nine local organisations led by the council – won the UK Housing Heroes Development Team of the Year Award in 2010 for its work to maintain house building in the area, despite the recession. The Council was also shortlisted from more than 300 entries in the 2012 award.

Partners too have endorsed the DDDC approach, putting their success down to;

1. Regular meetings with Development Control and Highways to expedite the development of housing schemes.

2. Funding of a Rural Housing Enabler, providing the lead in the development of rural housing schemes.

3. Provision of capital funding.

4. Pro-actively working to bring forward alternative funding mechanisms in conjunction with external agencies.

In April 2012, Leader of Derbyshire Dales District Council, Councillor Lewis Rose OBE said:

“Helping to provide housing that meets local needs continues to be the top priority identified by local Council Tax payers and being shortlisted for another major housing award is a tribute to the continuing terrific work that is happening here.

I am proud of the District Council's reputation of being ahead of the game when it comes to housing provision, accessing funding and fighting homelessness.

"In this tough economic climate we are having to battle hard for every penny to fund our housing projects, yet this year we are aiming to build 80 new homes and we are also making great progress in helping vulnerable people in housing need through partnership work with agencies such as the Citizens' Advice Bureau and Age UK's Housing Options service.

"We have listened to what residents say they need and since 2002 the District Council has enabled 950 new affordable homes for local people.”

Contact: Rob Coggings, Head of Housing, Derbyshire Dales DC