Town hosts regional homelessness summit

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A regional summit will be held in Bury St Edmunds on Monday to tackle the size of the homelessness problem in the East of England.

The summit at West Suffolk House will hear about key homelessness trends in the East from ‘Homebound’ author Rhona Brown, of the National Housing Federation.

David Bogle, chief executive of Hightown Praetorian and Churches Housing Association, will talk about temporary housing solutions and Tracey Brushett, regional homelessness advisor, will speak about helping local authorities with temporary private sector accommodation.

Delegates will also share their experiences and plans for out-of-borough temporary accommodation, barriers and opportunities in the private rented sector and meeting future need.

It follows the National Housing Federation’s Homeless Bound report which shone a light on the growing problem of homelessness across London, the East and South East of England.

Cllr Anne Gower, St Edmundsbury Borough Council’s cabinet member for housing, said: “I’m pleased that we are hosting this vital event.

“As local authorities we focus on preventing homelessness, but we know there is increasing demand for more good-quality temporary accommodation.

“We have to make sure we minimise the use of bed and breakfast and find new ways of housing homeless households. Here in West Suffolk we have a joint group working across two authorities looking for joint solutions - sharing experience, resources and available temporary accommodation.”