Tag Archives: empty homes

Andrew Stunell writes: Empty homes – the Lib Dem success story

As avid readers of Lib Dem Voice will know, tackling the scourge of empty homes has been high up my agenda since entering government. Empty Homes bring down communities, and doing something to tackle this growing problem was one of our big housing “asks” in the coalition negotiations. Previous governments hadn’t paid empty homes much heed at all, with the numbers left to soar, peaking in 2008 at 783,000. Labour’s failed Pathfinder scheme had set out to demolish thousands of homes, but ran out of cash, leaving some families marooned on what had become “ghost streets”. I was determined that this government was going to be different.

Posted in News and Op-eds | 16 Comments

Andrew Stunell MP writes… Tackling empty homes is shaping up to be a Coalition success story

As some of you will no doubt be aware, last week was National Empty Homes week. It managed to garner a lot more attention than normal thanks to a week of action from the Empty Homes Agency, who worked together with Channel 4 presenter George Clarke on a series of programmes that focussed on tackling the housing crisis, and in particular on empty homes.

George’s campaign is a welcome one, and comes at an important time. I regularly describe the number of empty homes we have in the UK as a national scandal. We have enough long-term vacant …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 8 Comments

Opinion: Four ways we can tackle the housing crisis

Housing is moving up the agenda -– and looks like being a key issue in next year’s London elections. The Greater London Authority now has more powers over housing and given London is still dogged by a lack of affordable homes to rent, lease or buy, despite the recession, it’s reasonable for Londoners to expect the next Mayor and Assembly to take action.

Building more homes in a time of public sector cuts will be a challenge, and even using what we’ve got more efficiently will take a lot of cash. So we will need a range of ideas …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 24 Comments

Andrew Stunell MP writes: Lib Dems should welcome localist reforms of Council Tax

Liberal Democrats have long called for reform to local government finance. No matter what alternative systems we’ve proposed, the key element has always been that the revenue was raised locally, and decisions about how to spend that money were taken locally. As you would expect of a Government with a Liberal Democrat influence, the Coalition is adopting that same approach. The consultation on the relocalisation of Business Rates has just ended, and today’s announcement by DCLG of the Technical Consultation on Council Tax contains a number of positive news stories for Liberal Democrats.

Take second homes for instance. You …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 17 Comments

Stephen Gilbert MP’s maiden speech

The second maiden speech republished here this weekend after Michael Crockart’s, as Lib Dem Voice continues a tradition started on Cix of reposting maiden speeches for the comment of interested parties.

Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, for allowing me to speak here today for the first time. I am delighted to follow Jonathan Edwards, and I share his determination to secure a Robin Hood tax on international financial transactions. As it happens, I had the pleasure of knowing his predecessor from my time studying in Aberystwyth, and I am sure he will be a worthy successor.

St Austell and Newquay is …

Posted in Parliament | Also tagged , , , and | 3 Comments

Empty homes policy launch

Details arrive at the Voice of a launch of our General Election housing policy:

The Liberal Democrats today set out plans to bring a quarter of a million empty homes back into use, making homes available for people who need them and creating 65,000 jobs.

There are over 760,000 empty properties across England which are no longer used as homes but can be brought back into use with some investment. People who own these homes will get a grant or a cheap loan to renovate them so they can be used: grants if the home is for social housing, loans for

Posted in General Election and Local government | Also tagged , , , , , , , and | 22 Comments



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