Hopes raised for growth of ambitious council homes building scheme in Flintshire


Owen Evans

An ambitious council house building scheme formed to help tackle huge waiting lists could be extended even further, a council boss has said.

Flintshire Council’s leader Aaron Shotton said the authority was getting much closer to its plans for 200 council homes in the county, but said he was sure many more could be built.

During a meeting of the council, members heard 82 new council homes had already been approved, with a raft of new sites set to be approved next month.

Cllr Shotton said: “We are going to start seeing that new build programme roll out right across the county.

“We have an aspiration for 200 council homes over the next few years and we are clear we can build more but we have to look in the next council for national government to lift the borrowing cap that restricts building more than 200 at this juncture.

“It is fair to say this council has been ahead of the curve and I hope we can go further with our ambition.”

The comments come after it was recently revealed the waiting list for council accommodation was continuing to grow.

During the meeting, members were told that 82 homes had been approved to date, with 12 homes already being let at Custom House in Connah’s Quay – the first council houses in Flintshire for more than 20 years.

Work on a total of 46 homes at sites in Mold, Connah’s Quay and Leeswood was due to start within two weeks, while work at the former Flint Maisonettes site was pushing ahead.

A fresh batch of sites is due to be considered by cabinet next month.

Cllr Paul Shotton said: “I am so pleased to see the progress in Flint and I was so proud to go along to the official opening at Custom House.

“Flintshire housing is an example to Wales and the rest of the UK.”

Clare Budden, the council’s chief officer for community and enterprise, said work was well under way to reach the target of 200 council homes.

She said: “We will be close to hopefully having a programme which at least delivers the 200 homes we promised.”

As part of the council programme, there are proposals to build 300 affordable homes in the county over the next five years.

The meeting also heard progress was being made on bringing council houses up to the Welsh Housing Quality Standard.

Mrs Budden said much of the internal work on council housing was complete, and people would start to soon see the benefit of external work being carried out on the buildings.

Earlier this month, Mrs Budden said the waiting list for housing was increasing faster than they could house people.

She said 1,310 people were on the housing waiting list, a figure that was continually growing.

See full story in the Leader

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