THE target for new affordable homes across West Dorset is expected to be met this year.

Latest figures, for the end of the financial year in March show 82 completions, within the target range for 2018/19 of 70-100 homes.

Among the recent completions are 24 at Putton Lane in Chickerell for both rented and shared ownership, and 4 social rented homes completed by Magna in Portesham. Sites under construction include Barton Farm in Sherborne, Poundbury, 24 homes in Charminster and 8 at Powerstock. Stonewater is also developing and all-affordable housing schemes in Mosterton and Winterbourne Abbas and some of these should be completed before the year-end.

Figures being reported to councillors on February 7th show that the district is still just short of the five-year supply of housing building land which is required by the Government – at 4.88 years.

The shortfall means the the Local Plan, which guides development, is more likely to be challenged by developers, making it easier for them to build homes where their requests might have been refused.