Shropshire Council to focus on future of housing stock

The latest developments in a review of the future of 4,000 Shropshire council houses will be discussed behind closed doors next week.

Shropshire Council's cabinet is set to discuss its 'council housing stock options review' in a private session at Shirehall on Wednesday.

The item had originally mistakenly been listed to take place in the public section of the cabinet meeting but is now in the exempt portion of the agenda due to the inclusion of commercially sensitive information.

The review is looking at the future of 4,200 tenants' homes in Bridgnorth and Oswestry.

Shropshire Council has repeatedly stressed that tenants should not be concerned by the review, which has been carried out by property experts Savills, and that their homes are not at risk.

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Savills was originally tasked with the review in March 2017. It was expected to be completed in 2018 but in May of that year the council's cabinet was told of the progress so far, and agreed to ask Savills to carry out more work.

The property experts had been asked to look at a number of factors relating to the housing stock, which has been managed by Star Housing since 2013, but is owned by Shropshire Council.

The consultants were asked to look at any financial opportunities from the homes, believed to be worth millions of pounds, the "wellbeing of tenants", a "sustainable future" for the homes, and making sure there are enough of the right homes to cater for demand.

Speaking when the authority decided to continue with the latest stage of the review, Councillor Dean Carroll, who was at the time Shropshire Council’s deputy cabinet member for housing, moved to reassure any concerned residents.

He said: "We know that our tenants' homes are important to them and we want to reassure them that their homes are not at risk.”

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