Agenda and minutes

Housing, Environment and Healthy Communities Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Monday, 11th March, 2024 5.30 pm

Venue: Bridges Room - Civic Centre. View directions

Contact: Melvyn Mallam-Churchill, Tel: 0191 433 2149, Email: 

No. Item


Minutes of the last meeting pdf icon PDF 78 KB


The minutes of the last Committee held on 29 January 2024 were agreed as a correct record.


The Committee were also advised that a response was being awaited from Cabinet following the concerns and queries raised regarding street lighting and community safety at the last meeting.


Declarations of Interest

Committee members to declare an interest in any particular agenda item where applicable.


There were no declarations of interest.


Flood & Water Management Act 2010 - Annual Progress Report pdf icon PDF 103 KB

Report of the Strategic Director of Housing, Environment and Healthy Communities


The Committee received a report providing an update on the implementation of the duties and responsibilities of Gateshead Council as lead flood authority.


From the report, the Committee received and noted updates in relation to:


·        The local flood risk management strategy

·        Investigation of flood incidents – the Committee were advised that a report is still being prepared following the storms at the Great North Run in 2023

·        Sustainable drainage systems

·        Consenting of ordinary watercourse works


A discussion took place on the responsibilities of housing developers and the importance of sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) for sustainable development. It was highlighted that The UK Government will shortly be undertaking a consultation for the adoption of new SuDS by local authorities.



(i)               The Committee noted the statutory responsibilities of Gateshead Council for local FRM and the measures taken to comply with those duties.

(ii)              The Committee agreed to receive a further annual update in March 2025.


Housing Development in Gateshead (Presentation)


The Committee received a presentation providing an update on housing developments in Gateshead.


Updates were provided in relation to the following:


·        Tenure – it was noted that within Gateshead 20% of households reside in Council rented accommodation and that 4% are with a registered social landlord.

·        Affordability – examples were provided illustrating the costs to buy and rent properties within Gateshead across a variety of schemes including rent to buy.

·        Development progress – the Committee noted that developments are underway through a joint-venture at the Freight Depot, Hyde Park Street and the Hookergate School site. It was also explained that a developer has been secured for Askew Road and that marketing is underway for the Chandless site.

·        Challenges – a number of challenges within the housing market were explained, this includes the need to support an aging population, climate change and contaminated ground conditions.


The Committee noted concern regarding the capacity of the national grid in providing an adequate supply to new housing developments; a comment was made noting that this issue has been found within the west of Gateshead.


A discussion took place regarding current vacant sites across Gateshead, the Committee noted that many sites had been vacant for years and had attracted anti-social behaviour and vandalism. Officers explained that whilst every effort is being made to market vacant sites, some are not attractive to developers due to contaminated ground conditions or the size of the plot. The Committee acknowledged that a lot of ground contamination was a consequence of Gateshead’s industrial past.


A comment was made noting that the north east has one of the fastest growing housing markets in the country which is being complimented by the district energy scheme. The Committee were also reminded that the new mayoral combined authority will enhance cross-Council collaboration in terms of housing development.



(i)               The Committee noted the contents of the presentation.


Work Programme pdf icon PDF 73 KB

Joint report of the Chief Executive and the Strategic Director of Corporate Services & Governance.

Additional documents:


The Committee received a report which provided details on development of the work

programme for OSC’s and the provisional work programme for Housing, Environment and Healthy Communities OSC for the municipal year 2023/24.



(i)               The Committee noted the Work Programme.