Low Demand Housing publication
This English Heritage position statement, published in January 2005, is intended to be a contribution to the ongoing debate on low demand housing. It has been prepared to inform decisions on the future of these areas and gives guidance on how an understanding of the historic environment can help in this process. A model brief for commissioning assessment work is available from this website.
There are around one million homes affected by low demand and abandonment in the northern and midland areas of England. In April 2002 the Government announced measures to address this issue as part of its strategy set out in Sustainable Communities: Building for the Future. Nine Pathfinders, covering 846,000 dwellings, have been created to tackle the most acute problems and provide models for successful renewal elsewhere. Dwellings within Pathfinder areas vary both in terms of age and building type, but the older terraced house predominates. The programme involves clearance, the refurbishment of existing dwellings and replacing unpopular housing with new build.
It is important that in considering ways of addressing the problems of low demand, the pathfinder organisations, local authorities and others involved should take decisions from a position of informed understanding of the local historic environment. This should form part of the overall analysis that lies behind the masterplanning and design process. An assessment of the historic environment should therefore be taken at the earliest opportunity and before detailed proposals for the regeneration of an area are developed. Further details are included in this guidance note and accompanying model brief.
We welcome comments on this document and the model brief. We would particularly like to hear of case studies demonstrating how heritage has been successfully integrated within a programme of housing renewal and any examples of area-based assessments where the information on the historic environment has informed the regeneration strategy.
Comments should be sent to:Policy Team