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Walls exposed to driving rain (unless the outer leaf is in good condition and appropriate to the locality).
We estimate that there are currently 7.3 million homes in Great Britain with unfilled but fillable wall cavities and around 807,000 homes with unfillable cavities, for the reasons set out above. We estimate that around 2.9 million cavities will be filled under the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target.
However, the insulation industry has informed the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) that improvements in technology mean that some of these cavities can now be filled; for example, three of the main insulation companies have installed cavity wall insulation in blocks of flats up to 45m, and CIGA (the cavity wall insulation guarantee agency) has assured DEFRA that cavity wall insulation is regularly retrofitted to homes in areas of driving rain (for example, Cornwall, Shetland and the Hebrides) provided that the external leaf of the building is in good condition. We therefore believe that the figure of 807,000 unfillable cavities in Great Britain is an over-estimate.
Geraldine Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps her Department is taking to increase the supply of affordable housing in (a) Morecambe and Lunesdale constituency and (b) Lancashire. 
Of the £837 million, £526 million is specifically for the provision of affordable housing. The Government are expecting a minimum output of 6,900 homes for social renting and 3,000 units for affordable home ownership. However decisions still have to be made on how best to spend these resources to achieve these aims.
Part of this regional allocation will go towards the Housing Corporations National Affordable Housing Programme (NAHP). The first tranche of the 2008-11 programme was announced on 26 February 2008. £45.3 million will be allocated to Lancashire, and £2.9 million will go to Lancaster, which includes Morecambe in its area. Further allocations will be made later.
Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will consider giving local authorities greater powers within the planning process on decisions to convert family dwelling houses to flats; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Iain Wright: In general, the conversion of a dwelling house to flats would involve a material change of use and therefore require planning permission. It would then be for the local authority to determine whether this is appropriate based on their local plans and policies and the need for such housing in the area. It is important for local authorities to strike a balance between the need to make efficient use of land by building at higher densities in accessible locations and making sure that satisfactory living conditions are either maintained or could be achieved.
I have no plans to give local authorities greater powers in relation to planning decisions on the conversion of dwelling houses to flats, as I consider that existing powers are sufficient. It would not be appropriate to restrict generally the opportunities that conversions can bring to overall housing stock, as these are decisions best taken locally after careful consideration of the merits and drawbacks of each particular case.
Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government in respect of how many new dwellings Bournemouth borough council has granted planning permission in each of the last three years. 
Mr. Iain Wright: Communities and Local Government collects quarterly aggregate statistics on the number of planning decisions granted for major and minor developments relating to residential development. We do not collect data on individual planning applications. However, data obtained directly from the borough of Bournemouth show that the authority gave planning permission for the following numbers of dwellings over the past three years.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the average purchase price of a domestic dwelling was for a first-time buyer in (a) England and (b) the United Kingdom in the most recent period for which figures are available. 
Mr. Iain Wright: Communities and Local Government calculate monthly mix-adjusted average purchase prices of domestic dwellings bought by first time buyers based on data from the Regulated Mortgage Survey. This is available for the UK, by country and Government Office region back to February 2002 on our website at:
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what information her Department holds on the average purchase price of a domestic dwelling paid by first time buyers. 
Mr. Iain Wright: Communities and Local Government calculate monthly mix-adjusted average purchase prices of domestic dwellings bought by first time buyers based on data from the regulated mortgage survey. This is available for the UK, by country and Government Office region back to February 2002 on our website at:
Julia Goldsworthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) how many (a) local authority, (b) private rented, (c) owner-occupier and (d) housing association homes did not reach the decent homes standard in each region in England in each year since 2001. 
Mr. Iain Wright
[holding answer 25 April 2008]: Nationally, the English House Condition Survey (EHCS) is used to monitor house conditions and has
been carried out and reported every five years until 2001 and annually from 2003. The survey provides the following national estimates of non-decency for all sectors from 2001 to the latest date available, 2006:
|Table 1: Number of non-decent homes by sector, 2001-06|
| Notes: 1. Base = all dwellings. 2. RSL figures are affected by transfers from local authority stock over the period. Figures are based on the old Fitness definition of the Decent Homes Standard. Source: English House Condition Survey.|
The EHCS cannot provide robust regional figures for each tenure on an annual basis. However, the following regional aggregates for local authorities (LAs) and registered social landlords (RSLs) have been reported by local authorities in their Business Plan Statistical Appendix (BPSA) returns and by housing associations in the Housing Corporation's Regulatory Statistical Return (RSR):
|Table 2: Number of local authority non-decent homes 2002-07( 1)|
|(1) Rounded to nearest thousand. Notes: 1. The BPSA started collecting data on non-decency for the period 2001-02. 2. Non-decent stock reported by local authorities is a snapshot figure as at 1 April each year. 3. The data are based on actual reporting and there is no imputation to account for missing values. Source: Business Plan Statistical Appendix.|
|Table 3: Number of RSL non-decent homes 2005-07|
| Note: 2005 was the first year in which data were collected by local authority enabling regional breakdowns. Source: Housing Corporation's Regulatory Statistical Return.|
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) if she will place in the Library copies of the original datasets used to calculate the geographical barriers sub-domain in the English Indices of Deprivation 2007, including data for each lower layer super output area for (a) road distance to a GP surgery, (b) road distance to a general store or supermarket, (c) road distance to a primary school and (d) road distance to a post office or sub post office; 
(2) if she will place in the Library a copy of the dataset of difficulty of access to owner-occupation used to compile the Index of Deprivation 2007, including data for each lower layer super output area. 
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