Epsom & Ewell adopted their Core Strategy back in 2007; it is part of their Local Development Framework. The Core Strategy “identifies the key issues and social, economic and environmental objectives for future development in the Borough”.
Policy CS9 of the Core Strategy sets out the expectations regarding affordable housing in the Borough, this can be seen below:
As seen above, there are different requirements based on the number of dwellings proposed in a development.
The Council has a general target of 35% of all new homes in the Borough to be affordable; however, there are different thresholds based on the number of proposed dwellings.
For developments of 5-14 units, or sites between 0.15ha and 0.49ha will be expected to provide 20% of the proposed homes as on-site affordable housing. The land size requirement is often overlooked – so developments of fewer units may also trigger this requirement.
On schemes of 15+ units or more than 0.5ha, 40% of the new homes are required to be affordable.
The Epsom & Ewell Borough Council Revised Developer Contributions SPD (September 2014) sets out that if the % of dwellings result in “part of a dwelling being required”, then a financial contribution will be expected instead, or the developer could “roundup” the number of dwellings.
The Revised Developer Contributions SPD also highlights that in exceptional circumstances, financial payments in lieu could be given as opposed to on-site homes. A viability report is generally required to justify these exceptional circumstances.
Epsom & Ewell’s Core Strategy is now over a decade out of date from a market and viability perspective; therefore, we advise that a site-specific viability assessment is completed on all developments of 5 or more dwellings, or on plots over 0.15Ha.