THE number of new affordable homes being built in York fell by 60 percent last year.

In 2013 and 14 just 47 new affordable homes were completed in the city - down from 115 in 2012 and 13. Overall, the number of homes built fell by 28 percent - down from 482 to 345 over the same period.

City of York Council has put the decrease down to the difficulties facing the house building industry nationally, and pointed to its council house building scheme which it launched to counteract the falling numbers of affordable homes being built by private developers.

A council spokesman said that the majority of new affordable housing is built because of requirements in planning agreements for private housing developments, and it follows that a slow down of private housing development will reduce the number of affordable houses being delivered as well.

In 2010/11 affordable house building in York hit a peak with 282 new homes completed, but numbers have fallen every year since. While the total number of houses built in York also hit a peak in 2010/11 - 514 - and fell the following year to 321, the numbers then climbed to 482 in 2012/13 before falling again to 345 last year.

And the data shows that since 2010/11, the proportion of newly built homes which became affordable homes has fallen considerably - from 54 percent in 2010/11 to 13 percent in the most recent year.

The council spokesman said the first of the 70 new council homes - 19 homes flats on Beckfield Lane - will be ready in January. On top of this, housing associations are at work at the former YWCA site on Water Lane, the former Our Lady’s School site in Dringhouses and the Derwenthorpe development.

“Just as the private housing market is recovering from the recession and completions of new homes are forecast to increase in 2014-15 the number of affordable homes completed will also increase to approximately 150; a three-fold increase on the past year.”

The affordable housing figures appear in an update on the “Single Equalities Scheme” due to be debated by a council scrutiny committee on Wednesday, September 3.

The papers also show that the a quarter of people on the council house waiting list in York have a disability, while 16 percent are young people aged between 16 and 24.