Funds for empty homes revamp

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A HOUSING body is looking to fill more than 1,500 empty homes after it was given a £547,000 funding pot.

Owners of empty properties in West Suffolk are being urged to speak to Havebury Housing Partnership after it was awarded cash to buy, refurbish and re-let homes that have been empty for six months or more.

Commercial buildings that have been empty for long periods are also included in the project which was funded by the Homes and Communities Agency.

Havebury is working with St Edmundsbury Borough Council and Forest Heath District Council on the scheme.

Cllr Anne Gower, St Edmundsbury’s cabinet member for housing, said it was looking forward to working with Havebury.

“Properties can be left empty for many reasons and can cause problems due to vandalism and may also damage neighbouring properties, not to mention the deterioration of the empty property itself,” she said.

At the last count, St Edmundsbury had 887 empty homes while Forest Heath had 949.

Rona Burt, Forest Heath’s cabinet member for housing, said: “This funding opens up all kinds of options for bringing empty property back into use, and we are urging owners to come forward and discuss their options with us.”

Any revamped homes will be let through Havebury’s Homelink.

For more, contact Melanie Mills on 01284 722008.