Crossthwaite and Lyth Housing Need Survey 2008

Crosthwaite & Lyth Parish Housing Needs Survey November 2008


2. Key Findings

The Survey

317 survey forms were delivered by hand to the households and businesses of the parish of Crosthwaite & Lyth (100%), with a return date of 7th November 2008.  194 households returned their completed forms.   This is a return rate of 61% which is above the average of 36.64% return rate for this type of survey in Cumbria since the beginning of 2006.

The 2001 Census information for Crosthwaite & Lyth showed a high percentage of second homes or holiday homes in the area with 52 of the 304 houses identified as this or vacant, which is 17% of the dwellings. The parish now has a higher % of second homes and holiday lets, with information from South Lakeland DC in 2008 giving the number of second homes as 39,  holiday lets as 23, and vacant as 8 – giving a total of 70. Most of these households are unlikely to respond to the survey, though 13 did in this parish. Therefore the response rate of 61% is an extremely good rate of return, and an indication of the hard work of the Parish Council and others in the community to promote the survey.

Of the returned forms, there were 33 (10%) responses, saying that either the whole household or someone living within the household needed to move within the parish in the next 5 years. According to surveys completed by Cumbria Rural Housing Trust since 2003, an average of 18.44% of completed forms identified a housing need. See section 9 of this report for the criteria used to determine whether a household was in need.


This report details the information derived from these 33 survey responses who expressed a need. Only 1 household stated that they were registered on the Local Authority and/or a Housing Association or other waiting list.


There were some concerns on the analysis of the adapted survey forms as some households completed the Part 2 (- needing to move in next 5 years), but did not complete the Part 3 (- in need of affordable housing), so some of the information on income and savings was not available, though generally enough information in the response was inputted to allow an assessment to be made.


Housing Need 

Of the 33 survey responses expressing a need, we consider that 13 households would be in need of affordable housing within the parish of Crosthwaite & Lyth. There is some need for rented accommodation (- 3 households), but 10 of the households would be able to self-build or convert existing buildings if they were able to get planning permission from the LDNP. However, if their land or buildings are not given permission, some would be interested in building on land provided by other means (e.g. a Community Land Trust), but some may be in need of rented (- 7 households) or shared ownership (- 3 households) accommodation. 


The current household types of these 13 in housing need are:


 We consider that the remaining 20 do not fit the criteria of being in need of affordable housing in the parish. However a significant proportion of these are local people in need of alternative housing who are not in need of ‘affordable housing’, but who are unable to find suitable housing to satisfy their need. Some of the households assessed as not in need of ‘affordable local’ housing may be eligible for ‘local’ housing. An initial assessment of these survey forms would show 9 households may be unsuitably housed and in need of alternative accommodation in the next 5 years. These are mainly older households wanting to downsize to smaller properties, often with level access, but not many suitable properties come on the open market to satisfy this need within the parish.


When older households are enabled to downsize, this should release their larger properties onto the market. Some of these older people have indicated to the Parish Council that they may be willing to agree voluntarily to local occupancy conditions on their property in order to ensure its availability for future generations of local people.


Possible changes to the Lake District National Park policy included in the draft LDF are under discussion and may well allow more development of ‘local’ housing to meet this type of need in the interests of sustainability of communities.


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