MORE should be done to improve people’s chances of buying a home in the district, according to a campaign group.
A survey on the need for housing last carried-out in 2003 stated that the district council had to supply 642 extra affordable homes every year to meet the Government’s rural homes quota.
But between April 2010 and April this year the authority had given planning permission to just 317 homes – less than 50 per cent of the required quota.
And the Countryside Alliance has said the figure must improve dramatically to protect the future of rural communities like Epping.
The chief executive of the Countryside Alliance, Alice Barnard, said: “If the rural need for housing is not addressed, and urgently, many of the communities upon which our countryside depends will shrivel and die.”
She added that housing should be provided to people who work in the countryside, to prevent them moving away to get on the property ladder in cheaper urban areas.
Across the country, rural councils have plans for an average of 29 per cent of the affordable housing they need.
Are you struggling to get on the property ladder in the district? Call the Guardian on 07795 507 440.