Mid Sussex District Council works with housing associations, developers, landowners and Homes England.

Affordable housing requirements

Changes to affordable housing requirements

The new District Plan includes a new affordable housing policy.

The new District Plan Policy DP31 Affordable Housing' reads as follows:

"The Council will seek:

  1. The provision of a minimum of 30% on-site affordable housing for all residential developments providing 11 dwellings or more, or a maximum combined gross floorspace (measured as gross internal floorspace) of more than 1,000m2
  2. For residential developments in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty providing 6 – 10 dwellings, a commuted payment towards off-site provision, equivalent to providing 30% on-site affordable housing
  3. On sites where the most recent use has been affordable housing, as a minimum, the same number of affordable homes should be re-provided, in accordance with current mix and tenure requirements
  4. A mix of tenure of affordable housing, normally approximately 75% social or affordable rented homes, with the remaining 25% for intermediate homes, unless the best available evidence supports a different mix and
  5. Free serviced land for the affordable housing.

All affordable housing should be integrated with market housing and meet national technical standards for housing including “optional requirements” set out in this District Plan (Policies DP25: Dwelling Space Standards; DP26: Accessibility and DP42: Water Infrastructure and the Water Environment); or any other such standard which supersedes these Proposals that do not meet these requirements will be refused unless significant clear evidence demonstrates to the Council’s satisfaction that the site cannot support the required affordable housing from a viability and deliverability perspective.

Viability should be set out in an independent viability assessment on terms agreed by the relevant parties, including the Council, and funded by the developer.

This will involve an open book approach. The Council’s approach to financial viability, alongside details on tenure mix and the provision of affordable housing will be set out in a Supplementary Planning Document.

The policy will be monitored and kept under review having regard to the Council’s Housing Strategy and any changes to evidence of housing needs."

Full details of our affordable housing policies can be found in our supplementary planning documents.

All new housing developments should be discussed with the Housing Enabling Team before any plans are drafted. Please find contact details at the bottom of this page.

Affordable Housing Delivery

District Plan Policy DP31: Affordable Housing, requires a minimum of 30% on-site affordable housing to be provided on all residential developments providing 11 dwellings or more or a maximum combined gross floorspace of more than 1,000m2.

As a result, because schemes for 10 dwellings or less do not have to provide any affordable housing units and many schemes in Mid Sussex comprise less than 11 dwellings, it should be noted that the percentage of affordable homes delivered in a year will not equate to 30% of all homes delivered in that year. High levels of Affordable Housing have however been delivered during recent years as shown in the table below.


Total number of Affordable Housing Units delivered


Shared ownership



287 (77.78%)

82 (22.22%)



299 (85.67%)

50 (14.33%)



174 (71.02%)

71 (28.98%)



147 (68.69%)

67 (31.31%)

Building in South Downs National Park

The South Downs National Park Authority adopted its Affordable Housing Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) on 09 July 2020. This provides further guidance to support the implementation of South Downs Local Place policies, particularly those surrounding affordable homes (SD28) and Rural Exception Sites (SD29). Should you be looking to develop within the boundaries of the South Downs National Park, please consult this SPD too prior to starting any planning. It can be viewed online here.


If it is not financially viable to provide the affordable housing required by Mid Sussex District Council:

You will be expected to support your application with full financial details of the scheme - including the costs of the development and its estimated value

We will employ an independent valuer paid by you to evaluate the figures provided and advise us on the financial viability of your scheme

Our Development Viability SPD can be found here

Vacant Building Credit

Vacant Building Credit was introduced by the Government to bring back into use developed sites with vacant buildings.

Guidance note on Vacant Building Credit

Failure to comply

Planning permission will not usually be given to developments that fail to meet the Mid Sussex's planning policy requirements - including the requirement for affordable housing.

Housing Association Contact Details

Housing Association Contact Details

Steve Taylor
Head of Land & Planning
Telephone: 07717 891929
Email: steve.taylor@radian.org.uk

Edward Till
Development Manager
Telephone 01264 405513
Email: edward.till@aster.co.uk

Clarion Housing
James Gray
Regional Partnerships Director
Email: james.gray@clarionhg.com

Guinness South
Michael Gray
Head of New Business
Telephone: 01293 874203
Email: michael.gray@guinness.org.uk

Claudette Rawlinson
New Business Manager
Telephone: 07710 922419
Email: claudette.rawlinson@guinness.org.uk

Ema Blay
Deputy Head of Development (London and South East)
Telephone: 0207 031 8609
Email: ema.blay@landgah.com

Moat Housing Association
Kim McGregor
Head of Land, New Business & Development
Telephone: 0845 359 6441
Email: kim.mcgregor@moat.co.uk

Jack Crabtree
Senior Land, New Business & Development Manager
Telephone: 0845 359 6441
Email: Jack.Crabtree@moat.co.uk

Raven Housing Trust
Stephen Clements
New Business Manager
Telephone: 01737 272553
Email: stephen.clements@ravenht.org.uk

Leigh-Anne Francis
Partnerships Manager
Telephone: 07741 648028
Email: lf@sagehousing.co.uk

Saxon Weald
Philip Tunnicliffe
New Business Manager
Telephone: 01403 226000
Email: philip.tunnicliffe@saxonweald.com

Francesca Wilson
New Business Manager
Telephone: 01403 226000
Email: francesca.wilson@saxonweald.com

Southern Housing Group Ltd

Rachel Murrell
Senior Land Manager
Email: Rachel.Murrell@shgroup.org.uk

Sovereign Housing Association

Paul Damen 
Area Development Manager
Telephone: 07881 773889
Email: paul.damen@sovereign.org.uk

Stonewater Housing Association
Marie Riordan
Regional Development Manager
Telephone: 01293 780418
Email: Marie.Riordan@stonewater.org

Worthing Homes
Damien Haley
Head of Development
Telephone: 01903 703140
Email: dhaley@worthing-homes.org.uk

Rural Exception Sites

Specialist rural housing providers who work to deliver Rural Exception Sites in Mid Sussex:

Chris Meadows
Regional Development Manager
Telephone: 0300 123 2250
Email: westdev@hastoe.com

English Rural
Nick Hughes
Regional Development Manager
Telephone: 01483 563758
Email: Nick.hughes@englishrural.org.uk

Mid Sussex works with parish councils to build small, 100% affordable housing schemes called 'Rural Exception Sites'.

They are located just outside village boundaries - where housing would not normally be granted planning permission.

The housing is for people with a local connection to the parish - and will remain for local people forever.

A rural exception site can make a big difference to a parish.

It can help to:

  • Meet the housing needs of local people
  • Maintain local services such as shops, post offices, pubs and schools
  • Help village networks
  • Add social balance

A 'rural housing needs' survey and information from the Common Housing Register is needed from very early on in the planning process.

Rural exception sites are developed in partnership between:

We also work with Specialist housing associations:

Contact us

Helen Blackith
Housing Enabling Team Manager
Tel: 01444 477232
Email: Helen.blackith@midsussex.gov.uk

Last updated: 18 December 2023