Monday, March 27, 2006

The Power of Nought

Are local authorities are the best agents for getting empty homes back into use? in many cases yes. But there are swathes of the country with no activity at all. These local authorities reported brining no empty homes back into use last year. The figure next to each is the number of long term empty homes in their district. Particularly bad marks go to the two local authorities that don’t even appear to know how many empty homes they have got.

Ashford 580
Berwick-upon-Tweed 200
Blaby 262
Blyth Valley 348
Bracknell Forest 335
Broadland 418
Broxtowe 594
Caradon 504
Castle Morpeth 475
Castle Point 529
Chester-le-Street 38
Craven 227
Crawley 226
Daventry 139
East Dorset 140
Ellesmere Port & Neston 349
Epping Forest 917
Epsom and Ewell 338
Fenland 561
Fylde 646
Hambleton 366
Harlow ?
Hart 150
Horsham 640
Isles of Scilly 0
Kettering 495
Maldon 360
Malvern Hills 314
Mole Valley 321
North Cornwall 186
North Devon 446
North Dorset 664
North Kesteven 700
North Shropshire ?
North Warwickshire 412
Oswestry 244
Oxford 138
Purbeck 72
Reading 806
Redditch 60
Restormel 359
Richmondshire 287
Rochford 456
Rutland 96
Ryedale 269
Sefton 2,898
Solihull 1,530
South Holland 402
South Shropshire 260
Spelthorne 236
St Albans 103
Stafford 437
Surrey Heath 380
Tamworth 184
Three Rivers 320
Uttlesford 475
Wansbeck 590
Wellingborough 208
Welwyn Hatfield 328
West Devon 420
Wokingham 475
Wychavon 427


  1. Why are these agencies doing so little and what is the goverment doing to force them into action?

  2. Martin,

    I think part of the answer lies in an earlier post "counting the cost in the countryside"

    Small rural local authorities are underesourced and overstretched. But it's not really a good enough answer. Government has made an effective empty homes work a key line of enquiry for inspectors asessing the overall rating (CPA) for local authorities, and is looking at a new national target and reward for local authorities who perform well. But in a devolved democracy local government still has some freedom to set its priories. I think it's up to local constituents to say if they think the priorities are wrong. Complain to your lead councillor for housing, the leader of the council, the director of housing. I'm a firm believer that this sort of pressure works. Incidently I am going to be writeing to every one of these local authorities asking what are they up to.