Empty RAF homes could solve district’s housing issues, councillor says
- Credit: Archant
A district councillor has locked horns with the Ministry of Defence (MOD) in a row over more than 40 empty homes in Brampton.
Councillor John Morris told the Hunts Post the amount of empty homes located at RAF Brampton was ‘worrying’ and that the homes could be used to help solve what he described as a housing crisis in the district.
The Liberal Democrat councillor claimed more than 400 homes in the private sector had been standing empty for longer than six months.
The homes at RAF Brampton are owned by the MOD, with the base closed at the end of 2013.
Cllr Morris has been campaigning on the issue for three years and says that the number of MOD homes sitting empty in Huntingdonshire has worsened.
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He said: “The situation with these homes just seems to be getting worse, not better. I cycled around the camp the other day and counted 41 empty homes on the RAF base. Most of these are the same ones that I had campaigned for years ago.
“I have the utmost respect for all military personnel and do appreciate that the Ministry of Defence do need to keep a number of homes empty for operational purposes. My concern is that it has failed to respond to my requests for information. “Many of the empty homes at Brampton have been empty for years, some probably empty for up to 10 years. Nationwide, I understand that about 23 per cent of MOD housing stock is vacant - more than 11,000 homes. The MOD could consider letting some of these homes short term, possibly on assured shorthold tenancies, so they could be made available in future years for military personnel if operational needs required
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“It is known that we are having a housing crisis in Hutingdonshire and it seems to me that these houses shouldn’t just be sat empty, and should be used. I understand that some of the homes are needed for occupational use, but it doesn’t excuse the amount that are empty”
Cllr Morris hopes the homes can be brought back into use like those at Kyle Crescent, in Brampton. The former MOD homes had sat empty for number of years before finally being occupied after pressure from campaigners in 2015.
Back in February, Huntingdonshire District Council announced that they would be working with the owners of empty homes to bring properties back into use in a bid to beat the issue of empty homes in Huntingdonshire.
A spokesman for the MOD said: