Construction to start on first council homes for decades

Construction to start on first council homes for decades

CONSTRUCTION work is soon to begin on the first council houses to be built in Thurnscoe, Barnsley, for almost 30 years.

Social housing contractor Bramall Construction, part of the Keepmoat group, has been appointed to build 19 new homes on the site off Lidget Lane and Tudor Street.

Councillor Bill Newman, Barnsley Council’s spokesman for development, said: “I am delighted to see the work to develop the new council houses for rent in Thurnscoe is progressing.

“This development will complement the work of the current Housing Market Renewal programme that is taking place and will contribute to the continuing regeneration of the area.”

If the building work goes to schedule, people will be able to move into the new houses next summer. All of the new council houses will be managed by Berneslai Homes and let through Barnsley Council’s “Homeseeker” scheme.

Funding came from the previous Labour Government’s Homes and Communities Agency, which announced in January this year that it would be handing out a total of £122.6m to 73 local councils across England.

Local authorities were invited to bid for cash under the Local Authority Challenge Fund initiative, which was designed to stimulate the construction industry and provide new social housing.

As a result, £20m is set to be spent on more than 150 council houses across South Yorkshire, with half coming from the Local Authority Challenge Fund and the other half being borrowed by local authorities.

Barnsley was successful in achieving £4.8m to build 78 new council houses – those in Thurnscoe, as well as further homes in Darfield, Bolton-on-Dearne and Ward Green, in Worsbrough.

Work began on the first of these projects, at Vernon Crescent in Ward Green, in May this year and it is hoped the first of those homes will be available to let this autumn.

Helen Jaggar, chief executive of Berneslai Homes, said: “This new development will provide more choice for customers on the housing waiting list.

“It will be great for the local community and will contribute to the wider regeneration initiatives that Berneslai Homes is leading on in the Worsbrough area.”

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