The parish of Staple is situated about 16 miles to the north of Dover and 9 miles to the east of Canterbury. The village has a community hall, pub, and church. Local children go to primary schools in nearby Wingham or Goodnestone.
With support from Staple Parish Council and Dover District Council, a housing needs survey was carried out in October 2015 by the Kent Rural Housing Enabler. The results were assessed against a variety of other data on housing affordability and availability and indicated a housing need for at least six affordable rented homes. The Parish Council worked with the RHE to identify possible suitable sites for a small development. The preferred site in Durlock Road was owned by a local Landowner, supportive of providing affordable homes for local people. English Rural, who had been selected by the Parish Council as the registered provider for the project, successfully negotiated the acquisition of the site.
A Community Consultation event and several Parish Council meetings were used to develop the layout and design of the scheme and by the time the planning application was submitted in January 2019, nearly 20 households had registered an interest for one of the homes. To generate essential additional financial support for the delivery of the affordable homes, and thus reduce the requirement for public subsidy, the project also included two chalet bungalows developed for market sale, with priority to be given to local people looking to downsize.
An intention to grant planning approval was received in December 2019, with unanimous support from the Planning Committee Councillors. Following the completion of the S106 agreement, formal planning approval was issued in April 2020 and construction began in the September.
Just over six years after the initial housing needs survey and site search was undertaken, six much-needed affordable homes for local people were completed in January 2022 and will remain an asset for the community in perpetuity. Fundamental to the success of the scheme has been the close working relationships between English Rural, Staple Parish Council, the RHE and Dover District Council.
An official opening of the scheme has yet to take place.