Homes for the South West meets Chair of the APPG for the South West Sir Gary Streeter MP
Representatives of the Homes for the South West (H4SW) group of housing associations were delighted to meet with Sir Gary Streeter, South West Devon MP, on Thursday to discuss the need for more affordable housing in the South West. Sir Gary Streeter chairs the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the South West which brings together Parliamentarians from across the region.
Chief Executive of Curo, Victor da Cunha, and Chief Executive of LiveWest, Paul Crawford, met with Sir Gary following the launch of H4SW’s new manifesto “Building for the Future: Levelling up the South West’s economy with quality, affordable & sustainable housing”.
The discussion focussed on issues which are impacting housing in South West Devon and the policies Government are pursuing to ensure more affordable homes can be built for local people. H4SW believe that more support for housing will be a key factor in enabling the region to build back better from the coronavirus pandemic.
Sir Gary commented: “I was pleased to meet with Homes for the South West to discuss how housing associations can play a part in levelling up the South West’s economy. It’s clear that good quality, affordable and sustainable housing is urgently needed across our region and I look forward to working with the group to highlight this as a priority.”
H4SW’s manifesto sets out a commitment to a £4 billion programme to deliver 25,000 new homes over the next 5 years. The manifesto also includes a pledge to increase this by another 20,000 homes if Government can provide additional support.
House-building will be critical to the success of the South West’s recovery from COVID-19 and addressing longstanding inequalities according to the coalition. The region’s job market has been one of the worst hit by the pandemic[i], highlighting a reliance on low-wage sectors including tourism and hospitality, and this sits alongside prohibitively high house prices in many areas[ii]. Recent figures confirm house prices in South Hams are already 16 times median annual earnings[iii] with affordability expected to worsen as house prices across the region continue to soar.
Homes for the South West Chair and CEO of Curo, Victor da Cunha said: “We had a very constructive meeting with Sir Gary Streeter. Homes for the South West shares Gary’s passion to promote the economic and social advancement of the South West as a great place to live, work and do business. Our commitment to deliver 25,000 homes over 5 years, plus the right support from Government, will drive economic and employment opportunities right across the South West.”
CEO of LiveWest, Paul Crawford commented: “We were delighted to meet with Sir Gary Streeter to discuss how Homes for the South West can help meet housing need across the region. Gary understands that to meet housing need in the South West 42,000 homes are required per year, with around 15,000 of these homes needing to be affordable homes. Collectively we already house half a million people and we want to work with Government to help address the significant gap between need and supply.”