In September 2014 Housing Minister Brandon Lewis announced 11 key areas that would receive a share of £550,000 to pioneer the Right to Build scheme. These local authorities became known as the Vanguard Councils, and would set the tone for custom build across the nation.
At the time, Brandon Lewis commented: “We’re determined to help anyone who aspires to own their own home – whether that’s buying on the open market through schemes like our Help to Buy, or the new Right to Build.”
The chosen vanguard councils had to establish and maintain a register of people interested in constructing their own home through custom or self building. They also had to identify sites appropriate for these small developments.
The list of councils and their budget allocation
- Cherwell District Council received £90,000 and committed to deliver 2,000 custom-build homes over the next 10 years
- South Cambridgeshire District Council received £50,000 to bring forward at least 100 plots of land for custom builders and to begin selling land from January 2015
- Teignbridge District Council received £100,000 to help implement a ground breaking ‘5% self-build’ policy in their newly adopted Local Plan, so 5% of all new homes in the area could be delivered by custom and self-builders
- Shropshire Council received £10,200 to bring forward 6 hectares of land for self-builders by linking with Stoke Council and local social landlords to find suitable plots
- Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council received £15,000 to bring land forward for sale by using formerly-developed council-owned land to support aspiring self-builders in the area
- West Lindsey District Council received £5,000 to make self-build plots available on previously-developed public sector land in the area
- Exmoor and Dartmoor National Park Authorities received £28,000 to explore how local self-builders can be helped while protecting important countryside
- Pendle Borough Council received £46,000 to deliver self-build plots in the area and explore how this could be used to further deliver affordable homes
- Sheffield City Council received just under £100,000 to bring on over 800 self-build sites and support groups planning their own custom builds
- South Norfolk District Council received £25,000 to work with Saffron Housing Association in the area to deliver 40-60 custom build plots
- Stoke-on-Trent City Council which was working to bring forward 72 hectares of land for local self-builders in the area