Decision details

Provision of 10 no. affordable dwellings at Impington Lane, Impington

Decision Maker: Lead Cabinet member for Housing

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: Yes


The purpose of this Decision Notice is to give approval for South Cambridgeshire District Council (SCDC) to enter into Heads of Terms followed thereafter into a JCT Design & Build Contract (JCT 2016 – industry standard) to purchase 10 no affordable homes representing the S106 40% affordable housing contribution on a site at Impington Lane , Impington.


The site has been brought forward by Hill who, as an award winning house builder and developer, SCDC have worked in partnership with providing a number of high quality affordable homes in our district.


In its entirety the site totals 26 new homes - with the policy compliant 40% affordable housing of 10 new homes comprising 7 rented homes and 3 shared ownership homes.


Hill are due to start on site in December 2019 and have issued draft Heads of Terms to proceed on. This site forms part of a package of sites put forward by Hill previously and formed part of the HRA Borrowing bid made in September 2018.


All reserved planning matters have been resolved .


It should be noted that the payback is in year 34


This site was one of a number included in Appendix L of the HRA Budget setting report approved by council in November 2018 ( see attached) . It is therefore one of the development sites that are part of the ‘ Unallocated New Build/Acquisition Budget’ included in the New Build Investment Cashflow (Appedix E) of the MTFS approved in February 2019.


Enabling/Strategic support

Strategic Housing fully support this mix, as it will provide much needed homes in Impington where SCDC has existing stock .

The overall affordable housing mix has previously been agreed by Housing Strategy as meeting the housing needs in Impington and its environs.


Scheme Details:

Planning Reference number :

The site has planning (ref: S/1486/18/FL) with all conditions now discharged.


The S106 is signed and completed.



Description of

No of

Type of


No of

Units to be delivered:










1 bed flat





3 bed house





2 bed house


Shared O’p



3 bed house


Shared O’p



















Shared Ownership units will be sold as part of this scheme                          

and their ongoing sale forms part of this decision                                          

Average equity buy-in will be 40%.


Contract type:

The contract will be a JCT 2016 contract. (Joint Contracts Tribunal) Design & Build Contract



Legal Advice : Freeths  ( Previously provided at Grace Crescent , Hardwick)

“We believe that either ownership or an option constitute such “exclusive rights”. It needs to be said, however, that cases do turn on their facts. We would also have to state that the Council should be able to demonstrate that in the case where it was letting a contract including development, that there is no reasonable alternative or substitute – ie there are not other similar convenient sites which could reasonably be regarded as being available for development, eg in terms of being for sale, zoning, access to services etc.


There are no other suitably sized permissioned sites in Impington that are available for consideration at this time.



Use of Right to Buy Receipt:

This scheme consists of 7 rented homes which allows the use of Right to Buy receipts totalling £356,390


Use of Commuted Sum:

We are using £150,000 of commuted sum monies to assist in bringing these 3 shared ownership homes forward as council new build. This aligns with our standard £50,000 per unit commuted sum spend profile on new build schemes


The scheme is considered to be value for money for the council. The offer and price per sq. m is commensurate with sums paid for recent council new build development schemes. In addition a robust financial appraisal has been carried out and a commercially sensitive financial appendix is attached. The scheme has a Payback year within the business plan parameters.


To approve South Cambridgeshire District Council to enter into Heads of Terms followed thereafter by a JCT contract for the build of the 10 affordable homes and a land contract and transfer to purchase the site for the 10 affordable homes at Impington Lane , Impington.

Reasons for the decision:

           This scheme will provide 10 affordable homes - and affordability is a huge issue for the District in terms of housing.

           These homes will also add additional affordable homes to the Councils housing stock and will be managed by the in house SCDC Leasehold team.

           The provision of affordable homes is likely to reduce significantly due to recent policy changes for housing providers and the lack of HCA funding available.

           Changes to housing benefit and welfare reform will also mean that the demand for affordable homes will only increase in this area.

Alternative options considered:

Option 1: Option 1: The Council decides not to enter into contract with Hill for the purchase of the 10 affordable homes on this site.


Reason for Rejection:

  • To reject the scheme would require a substitute scheme of similar size and cost to be found in the district to provide new affordable homes. This would be by no means certain and is unlikely to be achieved in the timescales. It would be resource intensive and is unlikely to be possible, with the return of unspent right to buy receipt back to the Treasury with interest if no suitable scheme could be sourced.

Publication date: 06/11/2019

Date of decision: 06/11/2019

Effective from: 14/11/2019

Accompanying Documents: