The 21st edition of the UK Housing Review aims, as with previous editions, to draw together key current financial
and related data about both public and private housing in the United Kingdom, and rapidly assemble them in a coherent and accessible format.
The whole body of tables in the 2013 Review, together with the commentaries (but not the Contemporary Issues articles which
can only be found in the print edition), are available here on the website.
The Review draws on a wide range of expenditure plans and departmental reports, as well as official or other statistical volumes,
survey reports, web portals and publications based on specific research projects. The Review also includes a number of tables constructed from
databases that are not routinely published elsewhere. The structure of the Review, and its sparse text, aim above all to provide a
swift guide to the data, with wider and more detailed analysis confined to the Section 1: Contemporary Issues chapters at the
beginning of the Review. This year the issues chapters focus on the new results from the 2011 Census, the potential for more investment
in English council housing, the effects so far of changes to the local housing allowance regime in the private rented sector, and the
coming introduction of universal credit.
The six chapters of Section 2: Commentary offer a brief introduction to and discussion of the key developments in policy, financial
provision and outputs, that are reflected in the tables and figures in the main Compendium of Tables. They also provide a reference to
other publications and data offering further useful insights into current policy issues. Of this year’s six Commentary Chapters,
Hal Pawson wrote 2, 4 and 5, while Steve Wilcox wrote 1, 3 and 6.
A longer perspective
Many of the tables in the Review provide data over a long time-series. Wherever possible those tables start in 1970, providing data
at five-year intervals for the years to 1995 or 2000, with annual data for more recent years. The precise range of the years covered varies from
table to table, depending both on data availability and the practicality of setting out data on a single page. Even with its landscape format, there
are limits to the number of years’ data that the Review can fit onto a single page. In some form, most of the tables in this
year’s volume have been carried in all previous editions, and readers can consult back copies for data for the individual years between
1981 and 1995 that are no longer published. However, readers should exercise care as in some cases data for those earlier years may subsequently have
been revised, primarily as a result of changes in definitions. A cross-check of the data for those years still published in the current edition of
the Review will generally indicate whether or not this is an issue.
The Review contains several tables providing data for the regions of England. Many of those tables provide data for the long-established
standard statistical regions (SSRs). For some time, however, government statistics have been published primarily on the basis of (the former) government
office regions (GORs). This presents difficulties in providing a consistent long run of regional data. Wherever possible, current data for standard
regions have been sought, in order to provide a consistent data series. This has not, however, always been possible; equally long back-series of data
for government office regions are not always available. In some cases, therefore, the Review includes recent data for GORs, together with
earlier data for SSRs. This is clearly indicated in the tables concerned. It should also be noted that the former Merseyside region was some time
ago incorporated within the North West.
There have been changes in the nomenclature of government office regions in the past; they are now generally shown in the Review under their current names.
However, these names are not always used in our source documents or datasets, and we have followed the practice in the latest editions of our sources, rather than
impose a uniform usage.
One further point to be noted on English regional housing statistics is that, with the 2011 DCLG decision to cease inclusion of such figures within official statistics,
their continued inclusion (where possible) in the Review has become even more valuable.
Over the course of time, government departments are restructured or simply change their name. Thus over the years of the Review’s publication the department
responsible for housing policy in England has evolved from the Department of the Environment, through the Department of the Environment, Transport and the
Regions, the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, to now being the Department for Communities and Local Government.
Where data series have been made available continuously over that period, the reference given for that data in the tables of the Review is the current form and
name of the responsible department. Where, however, reference is made to historical data the reference will be to the form and name of the responsible
department at the time they were initially published or otherwise made available to the Review.
Comments and suggestions
Finally, the editors would welcome any comments or suggestions on the current and future format and contents of the Review, and they can be contacted by email,
phone or letter (see below).
Professor Steve Wilcox
Centre for Housing Policy
University of York
York YO10 5DD
Telephone: 01823 323891
Professor Hal Pawson
Heriot Watt University
(and University of New South Wales - firstname.lastname@example.org)