Eleven sites earmarked for villages' affordable housing

ELEVEN suitable sites for affordable housing have been highlighted in Draycott and Rodney Stoke. Hastoe Housing Corporation has been chosen to work with the Community Council for Somerset to help take the housing project forward. It specialises in rural h

ELEVEN suitable sites for affordable housing have been highlighted in Draycott and Rodney Stoke.Hastoe Housing Corporation has been chosen to work with the Community Council for Somerset to help take the housing project forward. It specialises in rural housing and working with parish councils and works on projects in the South West. Affordable housing is aimed at people on low incomes. From a survey done last year, it was found 11 sites were needed for the two villages. Felix Marsh, Rural Housing Enabler for the Community Council for Somerset, said: "We have 11 potential sites in Draycott and Rodney Stoke and five that are most favourable, three in Draycott and two in Rodney Stoke, but the more options we have, the more likely we are to get the best sites with the best access to facilities such as shops."We now need to liaise with planning officers to establish which sites are worth pursuing. "We will look at the sites in Draycott first, as they are better in terms of planning. The sites are outside of the village boundary and Draycott also has a playing field, village hall, pub and a post office. The houses would be better situated to reach the local amenities."But at a parish council meeting recently, Rodney Stoke parish councillor Helen Dance said: "You have to remember we are two villages. For people in Rodney Stoke it looks like Draycott gets everything." Felix said: "This was one of the points raised at a recent development meeting and we realise we need to support housing development variety wherever possible. I must stress, if houses are built in either village the reason will be for suitability and the permission of the landowners and not for anything else. My role is to represent the communities. The final decision is with the planning authority and the landowner."The next stage of the scheme is for Felix and his team to meet with highways chiefs to discuss access to the sites. Landowners will then be approached.


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