I recently met virtually with Northampton Partnership Homes’ (NPH) Chief Executive, Mike Kay, and Chair of the Board, David Latham.
Mike, David and I had a very productive meeting where we discussed NPH’s work in our community providing housing throughout Northampton North. In addition to discussing the unique challenges posed by Covid-19 where Mike and David explained the action NPH have taken to adapt and overcome these challenges, Mike and David also raised the excellent work that NPH are doing to increase the stock of Social Housing throughout Northampton.
I am very pleased to hear of the progress that NPH are making in building new houses throughout our town, largely on brown field sites, that will greatly benefit Northampton residents by providing sustainable and affordable housing, whilst also greatly reducing waiting times for rehousing.
Nationally, this Government recognises the acute problem of housing shortage and is committed to building new houses and especially more social houses. This government has built more than 1.3 million new homes since 2010 and are committed to building a further one million over the next Parliament. In order to help achieve our targets, the Government made changes to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) – a guidance document about housebuilding for local authorities – in order to fast-track the building of new homes. As part of these changes we have given local authorities more freedom to make the most of existing brownfield land to build houses. By prioritising building on brownfield sites we can achieve our aims of building more houses whilst protecting our Green Belt and green spaces.
This Government is also supporting the building of social housing specifically through initiatives such as the £9 billion Affordable Homes Programme and also the removal of the housing revenue account borrowing cap, which will help local councils to acquire the funding that they need in order to build more social housing.
I have supported NPH in lobbying the Government to allow the building of more social housing in Northampton and I will continue to support NPH as they progress with their ambitious house building projects.