Skip to main content

Housing: Standards

Volume 507: debated on Monday 15 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many local planning authorities in England have at least one accredited assessor for Building for Life; whether it is his Department's policy to require all local authorities to have at least one accredited assessor; and if he will make a statement. (321552)

160 local planning authorities in England have at least one accredited Building for Life assessor as a result of the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment's (CABE) Building for Life accredited assessor training programme. CLG's policies do not require local authorities to become accredited assessors. However, Planning Policy Statement 3 gives clear direction to local planning authorities to deliver well-designed housing and monitor and report on progress. Building for Life is a useful approach that enables local authorities to do that.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many development plans submitted as part of the Kickstart Round 1 process were deemed (a) very good, (b) good, (c) average and (d) poor when first assessed against the Building for Life standard. (321553)

Details of the breakdown of Building for Life scores under Kickstart round 1 can be found on the Homes and Communities Agency website:

http://www.homesandcommunities.co.uk/public/documents/Kickstart_Round%20_1_Review.pdf

The HCA and CABE will produce detailed reports on all aspects of the delivery of Kickstart rounds 1 and 2 following the conclusion of the round 2 assessment process. These reports will include information on the design assessments undertaken.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many assessments were added to the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment's Assessment Register in each of the last three years. (321555)

The register of formal Building for Life assessments was launched on 30 September 2009. No assessments were registered with CABE in 2007 or 2008. 90 assessments were registered in 2009. Further assessments have been conducted by others but are not formally recognised or recorded.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many Building for Life assessments carried out for Kickstart developments have been reassessed following a request from (a) the Homes and Communities Agency and (b) the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment. (321556)

The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) commissioned the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment to carry out Building for Life assessments on Kickstart Round 1 schemes. For the lower scoring schemes, HCA supplemented these assessments with further information to enable the suitability of bids to be considered in their wider community and local authority context.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what annual fees are charged by the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment for continued accreditation for Building for Life assessors. (321557)

There is currently no annual fee charged by the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment for continued accreditation of Building for Life assessors.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what payments were made by the Homes and Communities Agency to the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment in each of the last three years; (321560)

(2) how much the Homes and Communities Agency paid to the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment for its assessment of the Kickstart schemes against its Building for Life criteria.

The Homes and Communities Agency was created on 1 December 2008. The following payments have been made to the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment:

December 2008 to March 2009: £125,304

April 2009 to date: £458,278 of which £244,332 is for CABE's assessment of Kickstart schemes against its Building for Life criteria, to date.

All figures exclude VAT.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many council and housing association homes in Birmingham did not meet the decent homes standard in each year since 1997; and how much funding his Department provided to upgrade council and housing association homes in Birmingham in each of those years. (321566)

The information requested is provided in the following table. This is drawn from the Business Plan Statistical Appendix (BPSA)—Annual Monitoring data from Local Authorities, published by CLG. The RSL data are from the Regulatory Statistical Return (RSR), published by the Tenant Services Authority.

The figures for funding provided by the Department are set out in the second table. The Major Repairs Allowance and the Local Authority Supported Capital Expenditure are not used exclusively for Decent Homes expenditure. We do not provide funding to RSLs.

Social housing stock—Birmingham

Local authority

RSL

Total social sector

All stock

Non-decents

All stock

Non-decents

All stock

Non-decents

2001

85,500

53,000

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

2002

80,900

56,900

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

2003

76,700

51,700

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

2004

72,900

49,300

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

2005

70,400

43,700

38,600

4,900

109,100

48,600

2006

68,200

34,900

38,900

4,600

107,100

39,500

2007

66,800

23,000

39,200

4,000

106,000

27,000

2008

65,700

14,400

39,400

2,600

105,100

17,000

2009

64,800

7,100

39,700

1,400

104,400

8,500

Note:

Figures rounded to nearest hundred

£

LASCE1

MRA2

1997-98

61,838,161

n/a

1998-99

61,815,478

n/a

1999-2000

60,087,942

n/a

2000-01

59,979,798

n/a

2001-02

58,015,822

42,624,554

2002-03

55,175,337

41,616,934

2003-04

55,300,203

39,844,656

2004-05

45,050,978

39,682,548

2005-06

47,952,457

39,422,670

2006-07

46,914,415

38,807,225

2007-08

44,992,723

40,273,716

2008-09

41,183,689

41,009,973

2009-10

37,873,808

40,722,499

1 LASCE—local authority supported capital expenditure

2 MRA—major repairs allowance