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New Local Authority Allocation Guidance


DCLG has released the new Code of Guidance for Local Authority allocation of housing. There is a slightly unfinished page about it here and a press release here. The Code of Guidance itself is here [link to pdf].

We will come back to the Guidance in a proper post soon, but the stated principle is:

The guidance makes clear that first priority for housing must be given to those in greatest housing need. But it also encourages local authorities to make greater use of the existing freedoms and flexibilities to prioritise needs specific to their local area. It also encourages them to do more to involve and inform their communities when setting their local priorities so that local views are reflected in allocation policies.

By the way, since John Healy became housing minister, every single bloody press release begins “Housing Minister John Healey has today…”. This didn’t happen with Beckett, or even with Flint, and the relentless repetitive self-promotion, even claiming credit for decisions that far pre-dated his reign, is getting more than a little tiresome and perhaps somewhat counterproductive.

Giles Peaker is a solicitor and partner in the Housing and Public Law team at Anthony Gold Solicitors in South London. You can find him on Linkedin and on Twitter. Known as NL round these parts.


  1. S

    Yet if one reads on, “greatest housing need” means anyone who has a reasonable preference. A fudge if ever I saw one.

    To be fair to them they had to react to Ahmed and without amending Part 6 they couldn’t really do much other than to try to claim that it does not change their position that allocations should be made to those in the greatest need.

    The chance of amending Part 6 in the run up to a general election was never going to happen.

    • NL

      Yep – sorry should have quoted further for clarity. The emphasis is not ‘greatest need’ – taken as reasonable preference tout court. Ahmad taken as read, no cumulative need – but ‘flexibility to prioritise needs in their area’. See the press release –

      “Councils have said they will use this extra flexibility to prioritise families with local connections, those seeking local employment and to tackle overcrowding and under-occupation in their communities.

      This includes:

      Manchester City Council, who are planning to prioritise those who are working, volunteering or taking up training and educational opportunities;
      The London Borough of Newham, who plan to use revised allocation policies to tackle overcrowding;
      Bournemouth Borough Council, who plan to use the flexibilities to reduce the number of under-occupied homes; and
      Test Valley Borough Council, who are looking at the possibility of setting a quota for a proportion of their housing stock to be available to those with a connection to the local area.


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