The Housing Secretary has indicated he is preparing to re-look at housing targets after reportedly admitting figures could be out-of-date.

Development is one of the biggest issues local communities are concerned about, with councils requested by the Government to find space for tens of thousands of new homes.

In Hertsmere, vast swathes of green belt land are seriously under threat.

The targets set by Government have been a constant discussion point and nationals have been reporting that even Conservative MPs in the south east have been pressing for a reduction.

Hertsmere MP Oliver Dowden says he wrote to Housing Secretary Michael Gove recently asking him consider whether his constituency's housing numbers are "up-to-date and appropriate".

At a meeting this week, newly-installed Mr Gove indicated the targets across the board may be looked at again.

Borehamwood Times: Housing Secretary Michael Gove. Credit: PAHousing Secretary Michael Gove. Credit: PA

The Telegraph reported Mr Gove told the housing, communities, and local government select committee: "We want to be in a position where people accept and welcome new development. In making a calculation about housing need overall, one of the things that I want to do is look at how the numbers are generated in the first place."

One of the criticisms that has been made by both campaigners and opposition politicians locally is the housing targets are based on 2014 data from the Office for National Statistics rather than newer data, such as from 2018. They believe newer data will prove housing targets should be lower.

Mr Gove added: "Some of the assumptions are probably out of date and some of the ways that those numbers are deployed by a planning inspector can be done in a more sophisticated way."

Borehamwood Times: A protest in Borehamwood in September over plans to build on green belt in HertsmereA protest in Borehamwood in September over plans to build on green belt in Hertsmere

He added communities should be able to push back against large scale housing targets near areas of outstanding natural beauty and green belt.

Meanwhile, at the Conservative party conference in the autumn, Prime Minister Boris Johnson indicated homes shouldn't be built on green fields, but Mr Gove confirmed the Government is sticking to its target of 300,000 new homes nationally by the middle of this decade.

The Government is also understood to be reviewing proposals for an overhaul of the planning system designed to boost housebuilding, with senior Conservatives party blaming the reforms for the defeat in the Chesham and Amersham by-election to the Liberal Democrats in June.

Hertsmere Borough Council has been asked to prepare a local plan that identifies sites to meet housing targets of at least 760 per year up until 2038.

The draft local plan, which reveals which sites the council believes are most appropriate to build on, is out for public consultation until December 6.

Visit to get involved in the consultation.