Draft Thanet Local Plan - 2031 - Pre-Submission Publication, Regulation 19

Rural Housing Need

11.15 The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) expects a responsive approach to local housing needs in rural areas, and indicates that release of rural exception sites may be an appropriate means of responding to local need for affordable homes.

11.16 Rural housing needs surveys carried out in 2013 demonstrate that unmet local need exists for affordable housing in most of Thanet's rural settlements. Where the Council is satisfied that there is no viable scope to meet this need including under policies HO1 or HO11, it will consider exceptional site release in line with the following policy.

11.17 Any such release would be conditional upon the first and all subsequent occupiers being first time buyers who are already village residents or their children, village residents living in unsuitable accommodation, dependents of village residents, people whose work is based in the village, or people with local connections who have been forced to move away from the village due to a lack of affordable or suitable housing.

11.18 Provision for some new village housing is made through other policies. Proposals on exception sites which include market housing or low cost housing will only be permitted where they form a small element of the scheme and it would provide significant additional affordable housing to meet local needs.

11.19 Any consent will be subject to a legal agreement to ensure the housing is available to meet local needs in the long term.

Policy HO18 - Rural Housing Need

Planning permission will only be granted for affordable housing development adjacent to the confines of a rural settlement provided all the following criteria are met:

1) The affordable housing would be of a scale, type and mix to accommodate identified local need arising within the settlement/parish concerned.

2) The need has been demonstrated in a detailed parish survey, independently verified if required, and has the support of the relevant parish council.

3) There is no reasonable alternative means of meeting the identified need.

4) The location and form of development is acceptable in terms of access, proximity to local services, relationship to the rural settlement and landscape impact.