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Local Authority Direct Provision of Housing

This project identifies the practical ways in which local authorities in England are engaging in the direct provision of housing in their areas.

As increasingly recognised across the main political parties and commentators, one major reason for the 'housing crisis' is that local authorities ceased their role of direct housing providers in the 1980s. Since then, the shortfall in housing provision has mirrored the scale of the former local authority contribution to the market.

This final report shows the practical ways in which local authorities in England are delivering housing today. It maps out a variety of innovative ways that more housing is being provided by the public sector at a time of significant pressures on local authority budgets. The report includes:

  • evidence that an estimated 65% of local authorities are directly involved in housing provision, whilst only 9% are not involved in any housing provision activity
  • a detailed review of the policy and practice context of local authority involvement in housing
  • details of a wide variety of mechanisms and means of engaging in direct provision of housing
  • recommendations for Government, local authorities, and other key stakeholders on boosting local authority direct provision of housing

Professor Janice Morphet and Dr Ben Clifford at The Bartlett School of Planning, University College London, are leading this project, commissioned by the National Planning Forum and the RTPI.


Related documents


The research team can be contacted at: