Happy families given keys to new council homes

By on 29/09/2010 in News

  • Time: 11.30am
  • Date: 29 September 2010
  • Place: Junction of Pershore Road and Balsall Heath Road, B5 7NE.

One lucky family today (29 September) expressed their happiness at being presented the keys to their high-quality, energy-efficient new council home on Pershore Road, Balsall Heath - one of the first to be built by Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust.
 
Ms Mumtaz Begum (32) and her partner Mr Lizquat Zama (35), will move into their new 4-bed home along with their three children and Mr Zama's elderly aunt in the coming weeks.

Developed through Birmingham City Council's ambitious house building programme, the home, built by local affordable housing specialist Lovell, is one of the first delivered through Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust.

Lovell is building 33 homes at Pershore Road as part of the Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust's 553-home new build programme. Ms Begum's family is one of four to receive the keys to their new home today.

Ms Begum said: “It all seems so unreal- I had given up hope of ever transferring to a bigger property. I'm just so happy at the move. Previously there were 6 of us living in a 3-bed property and with 2 disabled children, it was a real struggle. This new home represents a fresh start for the whole family.”

Ms Begum's former home in Acocks Green, where she has lived for the last 4 years, will now provide a housing lifeline to another family on the housing waiting list, helping to ease overcrowding in East Birmingham.

The first 4 houses have been built as part of Birmingham City Council's ambitious house building programme. A further 29 new homes are in the process of being completed on this site and will be ready for tenants by January 2011.

These are the first of 553 new homes currently being developed by the council, through the Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust.

Councillor John Lines, Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “I am proud to lead the revival, proud to have had the people to achieve the unimaginable- the revival of municipal responsibility through our very own Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust.

“My sincere best wishes to Ms Begum and her family and all our new tenants, in their new homes. I hope they are the first of many to enjoy the fruits of the hard work, dedication and commitment which has been given by this coalition council.”

The 33 new homes on Pershore Road, which are a range of 2, 3 and 4-bed properties, have been built by Birmingham City Council, in partnership with developers Lovell and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), which provided £1.76 millon of funding towards this development.

In total, the HCA has provided financial support of some £12 million to allow the council to deliver 230 new high quality affordable homes across a range of sites.

Paul Spooner, Regional Director for the Homes and Communities Agency West Midlands, said: “We have pledged to support Birmingham City Council's aspirations to directly build more council homes, and so it is great to see the first residents move in and the development take shape. It is crucial that we continue to provide more high quality affordable homes, like at this development, to meet local demands and create thriving communities.

David Gough, Lovell Regional Director, said: “We are delighted to be handing over the first completed property at Pershore Road and we hope that Ms Begum and her family will be very happy in their new home.

“As a local company, we're extremely proud to be working alongside Birmingham City Council and the HCA on this landmark project. All of the houses and flats at the development are being built to a high specification and they will help to address the urgent need for energy-efficient affordable homes in the region.”

The formation of the council's BMHT in 2009 represented the most radical change in direction of council house building policy in a generation. Councillor John Lines made a pledge at the time to deliver 500 new homes, during the onset of the recession and at a time when councils were collectively only delivering 375 new homes across the country (2008).

Ends

Notes to editors:
The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) is the single, national housing and regeneration delivery agency for England.  Our vision is to create opportunity for people to live in homes they can afford in places they want to live, by enabling local authorities and communities to deliver the ambition they have for their own areas. For more information visit the HCA newsroom at homesandcommunities.co.uk/newsevent 

Lovell is a leading provider of affordable housing. The company has expertise in new-build, regeneration and refurbishment while its responsive and planned maintenance business Lovell Respond provides comprehensive maintenance and estates management services. With offices in England, Scotland and Wales, Lovell offers a unique one-stop shop of services with the ability to build homes, offer a full menu of tenure options and maintenance for life. Lovell is part of Morgan Sindall Group plc, a leading UK construction and regeneration group operating through four divisions of fit out, construction and infrastructure, affordable housing and urban regeneration, and an investment unit.

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