The 20 councils that we predict will have the highest housing delivery rates under the 2019 test

Cheshire West and Chester, Vale of White Horse and Cambridge councils are the authorities that look likely to have the highest rates of new homes provision under the 2019 housing delivery test, according to research by Planning.

Cheshire West and Chester Council offices. Pic: Getty Images
Cheshire West and Chester Council offices. Pic: Getty Images

The delivery test aims to measure how effectively each local authority is delivering housing. It works by comparing each councils' level of housing delivery - using the the net additional dwelling figures - over a three-year period to the total number of homes required. 

The first test results for the 2015-18 period were published in February - three months late - and the second, covering 2016-19, were due last month. However, they have been postponed, the housing ministry told Planning last month, until after the general election.

Ahead of the government's release of the official 2019 test figures, Planning carried out its own  research to estimate what the results might be. More details on our methodology can be found here.

We found that this year, 112 authorities - or 34 per cent - scored under 95 per cent and seem set to face a penalty under the test, which means they will have to at minimum produce an action plan showing how they will improve their housing delivery performance over the next year. These include eight that we predict will come under 45 per cent and therefore face the most severe penalty, the presumption in favour of sustainable development.

We also estimated the 20 authorities that would score the highest under the 2019 test, excluding those councils whose housing requirements over the three years would be less than 1,000 homes (see table below). 

We found that Cheshire West and Chester scored the highest, delivering almost four times its requirement.

Meanwhile, Vale of White Horse in Oxfordshire, in second place, would deliver almost three times its requirement.

Cambridge, Stratford-on-Avon and Cotswold councils came in third, fourth and fifth places respectively, all predicted to deliver more than twice their housing requirement. 

Of the 20 councils, 14, or 70 per cent, have up to date local plans, compared to just one in eight, or 13 per cent, of those we predict to face the presumption.

Overall, 125 authorities, or 38 per cent, delivered less than their requirement between 2016/17 and 2018/19, while 201, or 62 per cent, delivered above their requirement.

Full details from our study of all the 112 councils' estimated housing requirement and delivery figures can be found here.


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