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Homes for people fleeing conflict would be a legacy for all

Published: Tuesday, 24 January, 2023

Homes for people fleeing conflict could build a legacy of houses available to all in the Stroud district, if a bid for Government funding succeeds.

Next week elected members of Stroud District Council’s Housing Committee will be asked to approve an application to the Government’s Local Authority Housing Fund (LAHF) to support the council in buying properties to house households fleeing conflict in Ukraine and Afghanistan.

The properties would be extra council housing stock, with the intention that they would initially be available to those who have arrived through Government schemes, then any households in housing need once the current crises have passed.

The Government’s new fund helps councils provide accommodation to families with housing needs who have arrived in the UK via Ukrainian and Afghan resettlement and relocation schemes. The intention of the LAHF is to address immediate pressures as well as increasing the stock of affordable homes for the future.

Households across the district have welcomed people affected by conflict into their homes, and Housing Committee Chair Mattie Ross said Stroud has a reputation for helping people in need.

“The situations that some people have found themselves in are heart-breaking and the district has reached out wholeheartedly to those less fortunate,” she said. “As a committee, we will carefully consider making a bid for £1.8million to help buy 15 properties, which would make a real difference.”

Deputy Committee Chair Lucas Shoemaker added: “These would be homes added to our council housing stock, paid for in part by Government and once they have served their purpose, their legacy would be that they are available to all who bid for a council home.”

One of the council’s key Council Plan priorities is Community Resilience and Wellbeing - Strengthening and supporting our communities so people feel included and connected. The council has built 280 new council homes from 2014 to date, and in the past year alone it enabled 245 affordable homes by working with housing associations in the district.

The committee will meet on Tuesday, January 31 and is being asked to resolve to approve the submission of a capital bid to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities for the purchase of accommodation to be held within the Housing Revenue Account.

It would be achieved by purchasing more inexpensive properties from the open market, such as properties previously sold under the Right to Buy or new properties from developers if discounts are available.


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