Proposed Submission Local Plan 2006-2028

Lifetime Homes, Care Homes and Specialist Accommodation

9.40 Evidence shows that the age of the population in the south west is going to increase significantly[1] and preparing the District to cope with this change will be challenging. The SHMA[2] shows that there are 70,800 households with support needs[3] in South Somerset, 20,934 are older person only households, some 32% of all support needs households. In order to help address this need, specialist housing options will be required, this could include care homes, Extra Care housing[4] and Continuing Care Retirement Communities[5].

9.41 Opportunities to adapt the existing housing stock should be maximised. With regard to new build, the Government's Code for Sustainable Homes (December 2006) includes the consideration of Lifetime Homes Standards. It is mandatory to include all 16 design criteria of Lifetime Homes at CSH Level 6.

Policy HG6: Care Homes and Specialist Accommodation

Proposals for care homes or similar specialist accommodation that meets an identified local need will be supported where it is consistent with the Settlement Strategy. In exceptional circumstances, where development is proposed in a countryside location, the Council will require clear justification for its location.  This will take into account the nature of specialist care required and demonstration that alternative sites are unsuitable and/or unavailable and the economic benefit of the proposal to the locality.

Where the District Council seek to negotiate affordable housing in respect of development that already meets a specified housing need, such as sheltered housing or Care Homes, the Council will take into account that such sites may be inappropriate for a mix of affordable housing and general market housing or that such sites have met, by their nature, affordable housing requirements.


9.42 Care homes and other specialist accommodation that meets an identified local need will be delivered through the Development Management process. Where such a development is proposed in a countryside location, applicants will be expected to provide justification for that location in accordance with the policy.

9.43 The following delivery bodies will be key in implementing Policy HG6:

  • South Somerset District Council;
  • Developers and Landowners.
Monitoring Indicators Target
Number of care homes or similar specialist accommodation approved to meet local need To approve planning applications for care homes or similar specialist accommodation, where there is an identified local need
1. Lifetime Homes, Lifetime Neighbourhoods, A National Strategy for Housing in an Ageing Society, CLG, 2008 [back]
2. Taunton and South Somerset Housing Market Areas Strategic Housing Market Assessments Report 2: Analysis of household survey data for South Somerset District Council Final Report February 2009. Older people are defined in the document as persons of pensionable age (60 and over for females and 65 and over for males) [back]
3. Support needs categories are frail elderly, medical condition, physical disability, learning difficulty, mental health problem, severe sensory disability and other. [back]
4. See Glossary for definition [back]
5. See Glossary for definition [back]