Chronic shortage of affordable housing in the countryside is ‘killing rural life’

Chronic shortage of affordable housing in the countryside is ‘killing rural life’

Chronic shortage of affordable housing in the countryside is ‘killing rural life’

First published in News
Last updated

RURAL families in Dorset are being progressively forced out of their communities due to a chronic shortage of affordable housing for local people which is killing rural life, according to Raglan Housing’s chief executive Nicholas Harris.

To mark Rural Housing Week, June 30 to July 6, Raglan is calling for more government investment in purpose-built affordable homes which meet the social and economic needs of local people.

Around one in five (19 per cent) of people in England live in rural communities with populations under 10,000.

“New affordable housing is vital to keeping the countryside alive for future generations.

“But, it has to be the right type of housing in the right location that stimulates growth, diversity and prosperity,” said Nicholas Harris.

“Whether the reformed planning system can deliver what the countryside needs remains to be seen but if we don’t fix the problem, our villages will die, and this is already happening across the country.”

The warning comes at a time when house prices in rural areas are up to 13 times the average earnings in the countryside.

This means that local people are being priced out of the market by the affluent people who are buying up rural properties as second homes for weekend and holiday use.

This in turn is forcing schools, shops, pubs, buses and other local services to shut because they are unsustainable.

“Providing a small number of homes which meet the needs and aspirations of local people can make the difference between local facilities staying open and available for the wider community or being forced to close,” explained Mr Harris.

“Each year we complete three to four new affordable housing schemes in villages across the country.

“The positive impact on the sustainability of those communities is significant.”

For more information see www.housing.org.uk

Comments (2)

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11:20pm Mon 21 Jul 14

Mike Pickering says...

What will it take until there is legislation (for nothing else will work) put into place to severely hinder the greedy use of housing as a speculative investment ?
There are only so many houses for everyone to live in.
Once again it is an example of wealth being seen as unimpeachable in its futile quest for expansion and growth at all costs. To hell with the legitimate needs of everyone else, to hell with the environment, to hell with democracy or a fair judicial system - money money money rules all and you better get out of its way.
Thousands of years of village life, a ecology of families and folks each working to contribute to a cherished way of life ?
Out my way, money is coming and it's buying the whole lot as a gaudy little piggy bank for people who live somewhere else. You can all live on an estate on the crummy edge of town and eat junk food on the bus, there's no room for you now.
What will it take until there is legislation (for nothing else will work) put into place to severely hinder the greedy use of housing as a speculative investment ? There are only so many houses for everyone to live in. Once again it is an example of wealth being seen as unimpeachable in its futile quest for expansion and growth at all costs. To hell with the legitimate needs of everyone else, to hell with the environment, to hell with democracy or a fair judicial system - money money money rules all and you better get out of its way. Thousands of years of village life, a ecology of families and folks each working to contribute to a cherished way of life ? Out my way, money is coming and it's buying the whole lot as a gaudy little piggy bank for people who live somewhere else. You can all live on an estate on the crummy edge of town and eat junk food on the bus, there's no room for you now. Mike Pickering
  • Score: 8

12:04pm Tue 22 Jul 14

motherhen4 says...

There's a chronic shortage of housing all over and the way honest people are being treated by landlords and the council is disgusting
There's a chronic shortage of housing all over and the way honest people are being treated by landlords and the council is disgusting motherhen4
  • Score: 1

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