Home   News   Article

Subscribe Now

New rural affordable housing service introduced in West Berkshire

A charity has introduced a new rural affordable housing service, offering free support to rural communities to get the affordable housing they need.

Started last month, Connecting Communities in Berkshire (CCB), has employed two new rural housing enablers — Maria Kelly and Barry Malki — who are keen to hear from parish councils and rural community groups if they think there may be a housing need in their community.

New scheme aims to fill housing shortages in rural communities
New scheme aims to fill housing shortages in rural communities

They said: “This project has a rural focus, so we’re particularly interested in hearing from parishes that have a population of under 3,000.

“We can help support the process of identifying local housing need, potential locations and developing partnerships with suitable housing providers.

“Lack of affordable housing is a huge problem across the country and can make it impossible for people in rural areas to stay living in their communities if their housing needs and circumstances change.

“It’s exciting to be part of this nationwide initiative which could make a real positive impact on rural housing.

“We are keen over the next six months to engage with many different organisations and stakeholders across the county, to help them to understand their role in the development of new housing supply in areas that may otherwise be overlooked by developers.”

Chief executive, Tim Parry, added: “There are increasing problems with affordability in our villages which makes our rural communities increasingly unsustainable.

“Building the homes people need brings vitality to rural communities and helps boost the rural economy at this difficult time.

“This project will help rural communities in Berkshire carry out a housing needs survey and identify potential sites.

“We have already engaged with eight rural communities looking for advice and guidance about affordable housing and we have two housing needs surveys in the pipeline.

“Any rural community interested in exploring their options for meeting local need for affordable housing should get in touch with our Rural Housing Enablers at the earliest opportunity.”

The national project — which received investment from the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs via CCB’s national body Action with Communities in Rural England — launched in Berkshire at an online event in February, with participation from different stakeholders including housing associations and parish councils.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More