More good housing news in Southend


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Only last night I was talking to a member of the LabourĀ  Party in Southend about housing in the borough. Fourteen years of Conservative rule saw not a single new council house built — and all the while the housing crisis grew worse. Since the Thatcher government sold off social housing stock on mass and foolishly failed to invest the proceeds in new housing to replace what was lost.

I’m not going to pretend that the new social housing secured by Labour after only a few weeks in power in Southend well since the problem alone, but I remain convinced that it signals a chance in attitude. Under the new joint administration, steered by Cllrs Ian Gilbert and David Norman, Southend Borough Council is taking housing provision seriously.

And this is extending to the private sector too. The announcement of a plan by developers Randall Watts to build 27 houses on a disused brownfield site100% of which to be affordable, housing association homes.

The plan goes before the Development Control (“Planning”) Committee tomorrow, so it’s not a done deal. But it is a good sign, there’s no escaping that. The solution has to be a combination of outgoing of public and private, and the public has been neglected for too long. The fact, though, that the private sector too is recognising the need for homes that people can afford to live in.

In May, Labour promised we would build housing. In July those promises are already being delivered.

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One comment

  1. It is good to see houses being built on brown field sites and derelict areas. of course it is but is this not setting a dangerous precedent in letting them off the education cost. There’s a huge issue with school places in central southend and this development could make that issue worse as any children will attend the more central schools. if they let it slide once how can they not let it slide again, especially as the development will maker the issue worse because of location?

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