Low-cost property boost

ALMOST £2 million will be invested in mid Suffolk over the next few years to build more than 60 homes for people who would struggle to get on the property ladder.

ALMOST £2 million will be invested in mid Suffolk over the next few years to build more than 60 homes for people who would struggle to get on the property ladder.

The Housing Corporation's national affordable housing programme will pour the funds into mid Suffolk between 2008 and 2011.

Tim Passmore, leader of Mid Suffolk District Council, said: “We are delighted. This will allow people to get good homes who at the moment cannot afford to.

“I don't know where they will go yet but we will try and spread them across the district. It will help keep a sense of community in our villages which is very important. This is excellent news.”

Councillor Sara Michell, deputy leader, said: “Affordable and decent properties are a strategic priority for the council.

“We have met our target of providing 80 new affordable homes per year for the past few years and are well on target to achieve the Government's Decent Homes Standard in our own housing stock by the deadline of 2010.”

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Andrew Stringer, a Green district councillor who has championed the issue within his ward of Mendlesham and Cotton, said: “Affordable accommodation completely changes people's lives for the better and can help sustain communities. Without good quality, proper affordable properties communities can easily wither.

“Young families cannot afford some houses with today's prices and people at all stages of their lives need this, including divorcees and the elderly. This is great news.”

The funding, distributed between the four housing associations - Circle Anglia, Flagship, Hastoe, and Orwell - will create 61 new homes during the next three years.

There will be further opportunities to build more, with additional funding possibly available up until 2011.