Eastbourne Homes, Eastbourne Borough Council and Stephen Lloyd MP are celebrating after securing £4 million to continue improving and upgrading council homes in the town.
Following the Comprehensive Spending Review last year, all councils had to re-bid for their Decent Homes Programme funding, a government funded initiative to bring council owned houses up to a higher standard.
The lobbying of key ministers played a key role, with Stephen Lloyd and teams from Eastbourne Homes and Eastbourne Borough Council setting out a compelling case for the town to be part of the revised funding programme.
Eastbourne Homes manages the Council’s housing stock and has carried out improvements to nearly 3,000 homes in Eastbourne over the past three years. The additional funding awarded means that this work can now continue to improve the lives of many more tenants.
Eastbourne Homes Chief Executive, Jo Ellis, said:
“I’m obviously delighted with the news and looking forward to working with our partners to achieve an affordable decent homes solution that will deliver value for money and maximum benefit for our customers.
“I am pleased that consideration was given to Eastbourne’s exceptional circumstances and that the loss of the funding would have affected our most vulnerable and oldest tenants.
“I would like to thank Stephen Lloyd, our partners at Eastbourne Borough Council and the support of our residents for helping to achieve such a welcome outcome.”
With the certainty of funding in place, the Decent Homes Programme can now be put back on track. The schedule of work in 2011/12 will be accelerated and plans for 2012/13 finalised in the coming weeks and months.
MP for Eastbourne and Willingdon, Stephen Lloyd, said:
“This is fabulous news for local people. Eastbourne Homes has worked stoically to deliver the Decent Homes programme in the town and were understandably concerned when the new funding framework was announced. Working with Jo and her team and the council, we have presented ministers with overwhelming evidence to support our claims and I’m delighted that they have responded so positively.”
In a joint statement, Leader of Eastbourne Borough Council and Board Member of Eastbourne Homes, Councillor David Tutt and Board Member of Eastbourne Homes, Councillor Graham Marsden, said:
“This is hugely positive news for Eastbourne, especially for those in older peoples’ accommodation and tenants living in non-traditional homes. The decision reflects the benefits of genuine cooperation and the great things that can be achieved through organisations working so well together.”