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Our Vision

Often it is the smaller sites that result in better related and better suited housing developments. Every parcel of land has different challenges and opportunities, we ensure that land is tailored with a planning permission to suit by using a number of different planning tools.

The types of housing schemes we develop are often buried within planning policies but have the potential to have significant impact on the Government’s aim of delivering the right homes in the right places.

We are adopting a joined-up approach with landowners, parishes and locals, aimed at ensuring communities remain an attractive place to live and put down roots. We are in it for the long term.

Why build a Rural Exception Scheme or an Entry Level Exception Site?

Rural Exception Sites are specifically aimed at the needs of the village and its population. Rural Exception Sites provide affordable housing which remain available only for local people in perpetuity, allowing young families to remain in the village who otherwise may have been forced to move away due to increasing house prices.

Entry Level Exception Sites provides entry-level homes suitable for first time buyers and renters which could unlock sites, on the edge of existing settlements, where planning policies are currently restrictive of development.

Planning policy supporting these kind of schemes has existed for many years, however since the introduction of the National Planning Policy Framework and its most recent revisions it has enabled the development of low-cost housing within the countryside on sites that would not normally be granted residential permission.

A village that lacks affordable housing is not sustainable, and often means some families can no longer afford to live in the Parish where they grew up or perhaps work.

A small number of new homes, on a carefully selected sites, could ensure rural services remain open and inject vitality back into the village for generations, whilst preserving the countryside and the character we love. .

Case Studies

We have developed, in partnership with Housing Associations and Landowners, a number of Rural Exception Schemes in East Anglia.

Most recently in September 2018, 34 new affordable homes were opened in Newport, Essex. The scheme had been designed specifically around the Parish’s Housing Needs Survey and every home went to those with a local connection. The Survey had identified the number, size and tenures required allowing the development to be tailored to the village. The scheme has allowed young families forced to move away due to high costs, to return to the village they grew up in. The bungalows provided in the scheme have also allowed two couples to downsize into a more manageable and suitable home. This scheme has helped provide a mix of good quality housing, which we believe to be essential for the community to evolve in a sustainable way.

Eight affordable homes were built in Sarcel, Stisted after the Parish Council recognised the need for this type of housing in the village after undertaking a Housing Needs Survey. The Need Survey highlighted the demand for homes suitable for young families and those wishing to downsize. After extensive public consultation, careful scheme design and site selection, the development was occupied by residents with a local connection in 2014. Engagement with the Parish and the village residents enabled the scheme to be fully understood and eventually supported by all residents.

Located on the edge of Boxford, Sandhill is a collection of 25 homes set around an open green communal space. Of the homes constructed 21 of the homes are specifically for those with a local connection, and will remain so for perpetuity. The remaining four homes were sold on the open market making the scheme more financially attractive to the landowner. The Needs Survey identified a need for a family homes, bungalows and smaller flats for those starting out on the property ladder. The scheme was designed to reflect the local character and style, and included measures in increase the efficiency of the new homes to reduce running costs for the residents. The scheme has met the local demand, and provided nine much needed bungalows.

Multiple Stakeholders, A Single Vision

Case Studies