More new affordable homes have been delivered in Swale in the past two & a half years than in the preceding 4 years says Swale Cabinet Member for Housing, Cllr Ben J Martin (Lib Dem).
The delivery of much-needed affordable housing is a key priority of Swale's Coalition Administration. Swale's Liberal Democrat Group Leader, Cllr Ben J Martin who leads on housing at Swale said "Delivering more affordable housing remains a key target of the administration, and especially of the Liberal Democrats at Swale. I'm really pleased that the actions we have taken to secure increased affordable housing in the borough, both through the planning process and through encouraging registered providers to spend their grant funding in the borough is having an impact."
Ben continued "I strongly believe that everyone deserves a decent, warm, safe, secure place to call home that they can afford. Despite the impact of the pandemic on the construction industry, we have delivered 81 more affordable homes in the borough in 2 years than the previous Conservative administration managed in 4 years, and we have many more affordable homes in the pipeline."
Since May 2019 up until the end of September 2021, 493 new affordable dwellings have been provided in the borough, of which 220 have been affordable rent tenure, a further 88 are social rent and 185 are shared ownership. Further delivery of social rented housing is expected to continue across the borough as part of the 581 new affordable homes in the pipeline on sites across Swale including in Faversham, Sittingbourne, Halfway, and the villages. In the previous 4 year period to May 2019, there were 412 new affordable dwellings provided and no new social rent homes.
Cllr Ben J Martin said "I'm really pleased that we have been able to accelerate the delivery of affordable housing in the borough, however, the need for more affordable housing is greatly increasing. We need many more affordable homes in the borough to meet the existing and future needs of residents, and I will continue to do all I can further increase the supply of affordable homes for local people."
In addition to delivering affordable housing through the planning system and Housing Associations, Swale has also formed its own, wholly-owned Housing Company, Swale Rainbow Homes, which aims to develop its own stock of new affordable homes.
Cllr Ben J Martin said "Significant progress has been made with regard to setting up Swale Rainbow Homes, with architects producing designs for multiple sites. I am hopeful that Rainbow Homes will be in a position to submit a planning application for its first project early in the new year. This will allow further new affordable housing to be provided within the borough."