Wokingham Borough Council has been overwhelmed by the number of responses to the Housing Target Consultation, with just under 50,000 individual responses received of which 46,807 (94%) said no to the government-imposed target.
“Firstly I want to thank all those thousands of people who took the time to take part in this consultation. I always believed that residents shared our opposition to the government-imposed target but even I was surprised by the response,” said John Halsall, leader of the council.
“This will strengthen our hand as we argue that the current system for allocating housing is arbitrary and unfair and that our targets are always too high. We will use this overwhelming response in our future lobbying on the subject and, whether we are successful this time or not, this is a line in the sand for the borough.”
Under the government’s methodology, the borough will need to accommodate about 800 to 900 homes a year in the years up to 2036. The homes already planned in the borough will help meet this target over the next few years but, without a major policy change from government, the rest will have to be accommodated through new housing.