As the Local Planning Authority (LPA), West Berkshire Council is required by national policy, set out in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), to meet the ‘objectively assessed housing needs’ of the area. There is a formula for working out how many “allocated” houses are needed in each LPA’s area. Lambourn’s share of WBC’s total is 90, to be built by 2037. Only houses built on “allocated sites” count towards the total, so (for example) the new Almshouses do not count, nor the new houses on Bockhampton Road. They are considered “windfall”.
LPAs must maintain an up-to-date picture of the amount of land that is available for new development, both for housing and economic development. This process is known as the Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (HELAA).
Land for the HELAA is identified through a “call for sites”. Landowners offer land to the LPA for inclusion. These sites are then assessed. Some are judged to be not deliverable, others deliverable within a period of years, or deliverable in part.
It is important to note that whilst the HELAA identifies potential sites, it will not allocate them for development. The allocation of future sites for development will only take place through statutory plan processes (eg the Local Plan or Neighbourhood Development Plans) which undergo public consultation and independent examination.
Any development on Allocated Sites will still have to apply for planning permission. Development on each of the Allocated Sites will have to be delivered within a stated framework (eg certain assessments having to be carried out; access having to be via a particular entrance etc.)
Allocated Housing Sites in Lambourn
Lambourn village is a Rural Service Centre within West Berkshire’s Settlement Hierarchy. Sites for development are therefore likely to be allocated here, usually outside but adjoining the current settlement boundary.
WBC has identified that 90 dwellings are needed in Lambourn by 2026.
The Allocated Sites for Lambourn, (allocated in the Housing Sites Allocations DPD (2006-2026) which was adopted by WBC in May 2017 and included in the draft Local Plan Review to 2037), are:
RSA22 Land adjoining Lynch Lane, Lambourn: Approximately 60 dwellings. (No application submitted as yet but developer has had discussions with planners about the site.)
RSA23 Land at Newbury Road, Lambourn: Approximately 5 dwellings (Planning application 20/00972/FULMAJ for 8 houses amended in December 2020. Permission granted September 2021.)
This leaves 25 houses to be built. “Windfall” housing has already been accounted for, so these 25 houses will have to be built on allocated sites which have yet to be determined.