Support to build 60,000 homes

A DONCASTER housing firm is supporting a bid to build 60,000 homes over the next five years.

St Leger Homes, the organisation that manages Doncaster’s council housing, is among five housing organisations urging the Government to allow councils to finance the homes to help tackle the housing crisis.

In a report called ‘Let’s Get Building’ the organisations say there is ‘a golden opportunity’ to stimulate the economy, create jobs and increase the tax take for the Exchequer.

The organisations which represent councils, housing professionals and social housing organisations are calling on government to unlock the potential of local authorities to build by removing a borrowing cap which councils and the markets agree is unnecessary.

The report states that there is a very strong case for economic stimulus, with the construction sector’s massive spare capacity making it very well placed to respond.

It says that 92p out of every £1 spent on building stays in the UK and that 56p of this returns to the Exchequer.

Susan Jordan, chief executive of St Leger Homes, said: “Increasing the number of homes available for rent is a high priority for both St Leger Homes and Doncaster Council and we fully support this campaign.

“There is already significant work on going in Doncaster including the development of more than 200 homes as part of the Homes and Communities Agency’s Affordable Housing Programme.

“Also, Doncaster Council is progressing its own new build programme, with a commitment to building a further 100 new council homes during the next few years.

“As an additional means of increasing available rental stock, working with Doncaster Council, we have developed a Private Landlord Scheme which helps to bring empty properties back into use.”

Sue Roberts MBE, chair of the National Federation of ALMOS said: “It is universally accepted that Britain needs more houses in general and in council and affordable housing in particular. We need workable solutions that deliver results quickly. We believe this report presents a compelling case for action and urge the Government to respond positively to our proposals.”