Labour group reveals priorities ahead of election

Grant Davey

Grant Davey

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Labour has promised the to tackle the record housing waiting list in Northumberland by building at least 1300 homes over a four year period, should they secure a majority in the council chamber after the elections on May 2.

The council’s recently released Housing Needs Survey revealed it needed to build at least 240 homes per year over the next 10 years to make inroads into its housing waiting list.

Labour says its plans would mean more than 420 new affordable homes for the Berwick area, with development envisaged for communities from Alnwick to Hadston. Eighteen towns and villages would be in line for new homes. There is also a pledge not to touch the county ‘green belt’ with brownfield sites identified for each development.

Labour group leader Grant Davey said: “Over the last five years communities have been crying out for affordable homes and we’ve listened.

“If the people of Northumberland elect a Labour majority in the council chamber on May 2, we will bring forward detailed plans to kick start the Northumberland economy through the most ambitious affordable house building programme in the county for over 40 years within the first 100 days.”

Labour plans to expand access to affordable houses county-wide by supporting Homes for Northumberland and the county Housing Association partners by using prudential borrowing on the basis of an ‘invest to save’ model. It means the authority would borrow and then lend the cash to build the homes, recouping the loan over 25 years.

Plans also include encouraging Arch, the Councils arms-length regeneration partner to expand use of its intermediate housing stock as well as assisting through the purchase of void and hard to sell properties, moving them into the intermediate rental market.

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