COALFIELDS TACKLES HOUSING SHORTAGE HEAD-ON CRT Property Investments Ltd, the commercial and residential property subsidiary of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, is underway with a £1m residential development on Washington Road in Goldthorpe, which will comprise of ten high quality, affordable homes. Recognising the impact that the ongoing housing crisis is having on some of the most socially and economically deprived communities in the country, we welcomed John Healey, MP for Wentworth and Dearne constituency and Labour’s shadow housing secretary, to the sod cutting ceremony which took place on Friday 21 July 2017, when he will officially marked the start of works on the site. The development began with the demolition of two derelict properties, which were owned by the Trust, before works could start on building 4 semi-detached homes and six detached houses. Extensive analysis of the housing stock within the Goldthorpe area found that the most pressing requirement was for two-bedroom homes. As such, each completed dwelling will be two storeys and will comprise of an open plan kitchen, diner and living room space, with staircase leading on to two bedrooms and a family bathroom. Building on a strategic partnership that has been in place for several months, Berneslai Homes will manage the properties on our behalf ensuring that the development meets with the needs of the local community. Shaun O’Brien comments: “We would like to thank John Healey MP for showing his ongoing support for this project. We know that the ongoing housing crisis is having a disproportionate impact on the coalfield communities and recognise that someone needs to do something about it. “This development will create 10 high-quality homes, in an area that is challenged by high rents, poor quality housing and absent landlords. It’s not good enough to turn our back on these people, they deserve better and we will continue to show our commitment and to make a difference. “Creating strong and strategic partnerships is absolutely fundamental to the impact that we can have and so working alongside Berneslai Homes has once again allowed us to redirect resource where it is so desperately needed.” CEO of Berneslai Homes, Helen Jaggar comments: “This a further example of how our partnership with the Coalfields Regeneration Trust really does work in practice. This is about lasting impact that will change people’s lives for the better. We are really looking forward to supporting and being a part of a positive future for Goldthorpe.” John Healey MP comments: “There is next-to-no government help to build new homes at truly affordable rents, so CRT and Berneslai Homes deserve special credit for this housebuilding project. It’s a model of partnership in practice which will benefit the village. But it needs to be scaled-up with Government backing, so that many more young people growing up in Goldthorpe can choose to stay because there are the decent affordable homes they need, both to rent and buy.” In addition to the homes that will be built, the development has also created local jobs and has generated inward investment during the construction phase. To complement the development, we have also deployed a Community Employment and Enterprise Coach in the area who provides one to one support for people to help them into a job, training or volunteering. The development forms part of the Communities that Work Programme which creates a targeted approach that specifically focuses on the most deprived communities in the coalfields to tackle three priorities for action; employment, skills and health.