Over recent years we have been laying the foundations to tackle homelessness and increase the provision of more social housing in the borough.
In 2014/15 we delivered 34 new, affordable homes on 5 former garage sites and refurbished some of our highest priority sheltered housing properties to make them “fit for the future”. This included work at Enoch House and Worsnop House.
In 2018, a £4 million project to purchase 23 former council homes helped more than 50 homeless households find temporary or permanent homes. A further 28 homes were secured in the borough’s private rented sector through Colchester Borough Homes’ Homestep campaign.
We’ve also been working with a specialist housing supplier to deliver affordable family homes for ex-service personnel and their families. This has been achieved through the purchase of homes on the open market, using some of the money the Government allows us to keep from Right to Buy sales. In return, we can put forward families for the properties through our choice-based lettings scheme ‘Gateway to Homechoice’.
In addition, from 1 April 2018 we set up a suite of companies that began operating commercially. One of these, Colchester Amphora Homes Ltd (CAHL)-our wholly-owned housing development company aims to increase housing in Colchester generally. The company’s commitment to mixed-tenure housebuilding incorporates 30% affordable homes alongside 70% private market homes.