Core Strategy - Adopted January 2009


Construction, Kessingland

Housing Requirement
5.61 The East of England Plan (May 2008) requires a total of at least 5800 dwellings to be built in Waveney over the period to 2021, a rate of 290 per year. PPS3 Housing and the East of England Plan require that a 15 year supply of housing land is identified beyond the adoption of the Core Strategy. Therefore, provision will be made for approximately a further 1,200 dwellings for the period 2021 to 2025 to meet this need. To meet this commitment, the amount of land for housing will be provided through existing commitments, new housing allocations, and windfall developments (i.e. those sites which are neither commitments nor allocations and for which it is difficult to predict exactly where development will take place). The number of dwellings built over the period from 2001 is also taken into account (see Housing Trajectory Appendix 1). Priority will be given to brownfield sites to assist regeneration and urban renaissance. New housing allocations will be identified in the Site Specific Allocations Documents.

Table 7 Land availability position as of 31st March 2007

East of England Plan requirement 2001-2021


Roll forward remaining annual average East of England Plan requirement 2021-2025 (4 x 290)


Total housing requirement 2001-2025


Dwellings completed 2001-2007


Dwellings with planning permission


Dwellings under construction


Allocated sites that have been given planning permission between 1st April and 3rd December 2007 (including those subject to a Section 106 agreement)


Subtotal of dwellings already identified 2001-2007


Remaining dwellings for which land is required 2007-2025


Housing Distribution Strategy
5.62 The future distribution of housing within the District will be governed by government guidelines, the East of England Plan (May 2008) policies and the policy approach set out in this Core Strategy. It also takes account of an assessment of sites as set out in the Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (Nov 2007).

5.63 This context points to most development taking place in Lowestoft as the largest town in the District and having a commensurate range of services and facilities, employment, public transport and opportunities for development on previously developed land. The market towns, providing the role of a focal point for the surrounding villages and rural areas, will be expected to accommodate some additional housing. As for the consideration of options for the market towns under the approach to settlement strategy, focus will be on previously developed land where the opportunities occur. This points to more growth in Beccles (with Worlingham) and Halesworth, than Bungay and Southwold (with Reydon). In addition, the environmental constraints to development in and around Bungay and Southwold are greater.

5.64 Development in the rural areas outside Lowestoft and the market towns will be focused primarily on the Larger Villages (Policy CS01). 'Physical limits' for these settlements will be defined in the Development Management Policies document. Within these 'limits' individual or small groups of dwellings on previously developed land will usually be acceptable subject to the appropriate Development Management policies. There may be some opportunities for small-scale housing development within the physical limits but where a local housing need is demonstrated, the priority will be for affordable housing or replacement of dwellings lost to coastal erosion. If the housing need cannot be satisfied within the physical limits there may be opportunities for these specific types of housing to be located on the edge of the village.

5.65 Outside these villages, in the countryside a more restrictive approach to development will be taken. Specific exceptions to this approach could include infilling of one or two dwellings in appropriate locations, barn conversions, agricultural workers dwellings and affordable housing.

Housing Development on Previously Developed Land
5.66 The vast majority of new housing allocations and windfall sites from 2007 are anticipated to be on previously developed land, taking opportunities to redevelop brownfield sites where they occur in Lowestoft and the market towns. When all existing completions and sites with planning permission to 2007 are taken into account, more than 50% of the total amount of new housing supplied during 2001 to 2025 is expected to be on previously developed land (see Appendix 1).

Housing Provision

5.67 Table 7 shows that the Waveney LDF needs to identify land to accommodate at least 2,374 dwellings from 2007 to 2025. Around 70-80% of total housing growth 2001-2025 should be in Lowestoft, (including Carlton Colville and Oulton) as the main town. To achieve the middle of this range (75%), around 2,200 of the additional homes (2007-2025) would need to be provided in this area, taking into account existing completions and sites with planning permission. The majority of these (approx 1500) will be located on previously developed land in the Lake Lothing Area Action Plan area of central Lowestoft, with the rest likely to be accommodated on other brownfield sites within the physical limits of the town. The Waveney Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA) shows that there are sufficient large brownfield sites in Lowestoft to accommodate this amount of housing without needing to rely on unallocated 'windfall' development.

Market Towns
5.68 The remaining dwellings should be distributed between the four market towns, leading to around 15-25% of total housing growth in the market towns. As an indicative figure, approximately 375 additional dwellings would need to be provided in the market towns between 2007 and 2025 to achieve the middle of this range (20%). The Waveney SHLAA shows that sufficient opportunities exist to accommodate at least 375 dwellings on previously developed land. This would avoid the need for greenfield allocations in the market towns and contribute towards the achievement of the regional previously developed land target of 60%. The majority of these new dwellings are likely to be located in Beccles (around 40%) and Halesworth (around 30%), where most brownfield opportunities exist. Most allocations will be made in Beccles and Halesworth.

5.69 Figures contained in the SHLAA show that a large proportion of the brownfield sites in the market towns are small sites or are otherwise unsuitable for allocation e.g. where there is an existing use on the site. A windfall allowance will need to be taken into account when planning for new housing delivery in the market towns, to avoid the need for greenfield allocations when brownfield opportunities within existing settlement boundaries are known to exist. It is anticipated that around two-thirds of future housing growth in the market towns (or up to around 250 dwellings) will come forward as windfall development. As required by PPS3, the windfall allowance will not be applied in the first 10 years of housing supply, but an average annual windfall figure of 31 dwellings per annum will be taken into account in the remaining 8 years, from 2017/18 onwards. Analysis of sites identified in the SHLAA and historic windfall figures for the past 6 years illustrate that this annual average figure is realistic.

Larger Villages
5.70 There is not anticipated to be a need to allocate further housing land in the larger villages given the current focus on development in the towns. Dwellings from existing completions and sites granted planning permission between 2001-2007 mean that around 4-5% of the total housing growth 2001 to 2021 will have taken place in the larger villages without any further permissions being granted. Windfall opportunities on previously developed land within the villages and greenfield affordable housing schemes could potentially still take place in the larger villages, commensurate with their scale and character. However, this has not been included when calculating how to meet the minimum housing targets in the East of England Plan, and could be seen as over and above this.

5.71 Table 8 and figure 5 show the anticipated distribution of the 6,960 housing requirement for Waveney. Additional unallocated 'windfall' sites are also likely to be permitted where these are in accordance with planning policies (for example redevelopment of brownfield sites currently in use, urban intensification, rural exception sites), but these have not been included when planning ahead to meet the required housing figure. The number of new houses completed each year will be monitored through the Annual Monitoring Report, and allocations will be reviewed if it becomes necessary to increase (or reduce) the amount of housing allocated in certain locations.

Table 8 Anticipated distribution of housing supply in Waveney 2001-2025 to meet the minimum RSS requirement



Completions 2001-07

Dwellings with permission but not yet completed Apr 07

Allocated sites with planning permission Apr-Dec 07 or awaiting S106

Indicative estimate of allocations / market town windfall allowance dwellings 2007-20251 

Total number of dwellings provided 2001-20251

Total % of dwellings provided 2001-20251


Total % of dwellings provided on PDL 2001-20251 

Lowestoft + Carlton Colville + Oulton 









Market towns

Beccles + Worlingham























Southwold + Reydon




Larger villages

Barnby + North Cove

















































1 Indicative estimate based on middle of proposed range of total housing distribution, i.e. 75% in Lowestoft (proposed range 70-80%) and 20% in the market towns (proposed range 15-25%)

2 All of which is likely to be achieved on allocated sites

3 One-third of which is likely to be achieved on allocated sites, with the remaining two-thirds as windfall development


Figure 5 - Anticipated distribution of housing supply in Waveney 2001-2025 to meet the minimum RSS requirement

Figure 5 - Anticipated Distribution of housing supply in Waveney 2021-2025 to meet the minimum RSS requirement

Housing Mix
5.72 The Government wants to promote sustainable communities. It states that what makes a community sustainable is a well integrated mix of decent housing of different types and tenures to support a range of households of different sizes, ages and incomes. Local Development Documents are expected to achieve a broad balance of different households, translate this into a provision between affordable housing and normal market provision and address the needs of specific groups.

5.73 In association with Great Yarmouth Borough Council, the Council undertook a Housing Market Assessment, including an assessment of housing need. This will inform the Development Management Policies and Site Specific Allocations in relation to the local housing market, the types of housing needs in the District and the amount of affordable housing required. The needs of gypsies and travellers have also been assessed with other Suffolk authorities, and are addressed separately in policy CS12. Any land use approach will need to be supported by other measures to assist people in meeting their housing needs.

5.74 The Housing Market Assessment identified demographic trends towards smaller households and an aging population, and concluded that there will be substantial need for accessible and adaptable homes in the District, some with an element of care. House prices in Lowestoft almost doubled between 1996 and 2006, and affordability is a major issue across Waveney. The Housing Market Assessment found a need for 225 affordable homes each year. Whilst this total is not achievable, a target of 30% affordable housing was recommended in Waveney, 10% of which should be intermediate housing (shared ownership or low cost housing for sale or intermediate rent). The majority of identified affordable housing need (82%) was for smaller 1-2 bedroom dwellings, with some need for larger family accommodation with 3 or more bedrooms. In accordance with PPS3, appropriate thresholds and targets for affordable housing based on local needs will be set through the Development Management Policies and Site Specific Allocations Documents.

Policy CS11 - Housing

Provision will be made for 5,800 dwellings over the period 2001 to 2021. In addition, to ensure at least a 15 year supply of housing from the adoption of this Core Strategy, provision will be made for a further 1160 dwellings for the period 2021 to 2025. The distribution of housing will be broadly in accordance with the proportions indicated below:

In the region of 5,000 dwellings in Lowestoft (inc Carlton Colville and Oulton).

In the region of 1,500 dwellings in the Market towns of Beccles (inc Worlingham), Bungay, Halesworth, and Southwold/Reydon. Beccles and Halesworth will take a larger share of this growth based on their brownfield opportunities.

Up to approximately 300 dwellings will be accommodated in the larger villages. In these villages only small-scale development, commensurate with their scale and character will be allowed.

The Site Specific Allocations Document and the Lake Lothing Area Action Plan will identify specific sites to accommodate the broad distribution of housing indicated above. A sequential approach to allocated sites and proposals for development will be taken in the following order:

  • previously developed land within the physical limits of settlements;
  • previously developed land on the edge of settlements;
  • greenfield sites within settlements may be acceptable in exceptional circumstances, in accordance with PPG17; and
  • greenfield sites on the edge of settlements.

In order to avoid greenfield allocations in the market towns, up to 250 dwellings are anticipated to be delivered on small or other unallocated windfall sites in the period 2017-2025.

Outside the larger villages, only infill development and other exceptions such as affordable housing, barn conversions, and agricultural workers dwellings to support the rural economy will be permitted. Character and form of the settlement, access to services and facilities and impact on the landscape will be important in determining proposals for infill development and affordable housing. Affordable housing will also be dependent on an identified housing need.

Development Management Policies will provide greater guidance as to how future housing development should take place. This DPD will include policies, thresholds and targets to ensure that new development delivers affordable housing and an appropriate housing mix to meet local needs.