Posted on: Friday 28 October 2022
This week, a housing partners summit took place with contributions from Torfaen council, registered social landlords Bron Afon and Melin Homes, plus local health, housing developers and planners.
The summit which took place at the Pontypool Active Living Centre considered how collectively partners could:
- Make better use of existing homes
- Improve the quality, safety and sustainability of homes
- Bring forward new land and homes
- Invigorate the local housing market
- Address affordability and wellbeing
- Maximise budgets and increase investment
- Deliver homes that help people retain independence.
Cllr Anthony Hunt, Leader of Torfaen Council, said: “The housing challenge is here and now but we also need a shared vision that will tackle supply and affordability for the next generation.
“A decent home is the foundation all public services rely on. Children can’t learn without a stable, warm home. People become ill in poor quality, damp homes. Suffering is caused when unsustainably high proportions of peoples’ income is taken up by housing costs. Housing cuts through all our services.
“The current overheating of the housing market, with rocketing house prices, mortgage rates and rent is creating an affordability gap. Demand for social rented property is massively outstripping supply. So all partners must find innovative solutions to provide housing options that meet the future needs of our residents.”
Paula Kennedy, Chief Executive of Melin Homes, said: “At Melin we pride ourselves on working collaboratively with our local authority partners. We have more challenging times ahead, but we know that by working together, we are better placed to support residents and communities. The Torfaen Housing Summit is a great example of how, by working in partnership, we achieve more. I look forward to seeing how we can progress with the ideas generated today and plan for the future of housing in Torfaen.”
Alan Brunt, Chief Executive of Bron Afon, said: “How well society functions is dependent on the quality and supply of new homes. Decision have come together today to address problems our tenants and residents are facing and to ensure we collectively support people living in our homes through the current cost of living crisis. There just aren’t enough homes, so we must bring more high quality sustainable homes to market.”
At the end of the summit, key partners signed up to local commitments that will create a new strategic housing forum and a new strategic housing strategy and action plan for Torfaen.