Council gives its backing to Empty Homes Week

Peterborough City Council is supporting Empty Homes Week, a national campaign which supports the return to use of empty and derelict properties nationwide.

The initiative, organised by the Empty Homes Agency, aims to raise awareness of the potential of empty homes to meet housing needs - and devise and promote sustainable solutions that bring empty homes back into use.

The week runs until Sunday 6 December 2015.

Councillor Peter Hiller, the city council’s cabinet member for growth, planning, housing and economic development, said: "We are proactive in our approach to the problem of empty homes and have a dedicated officer tackling the issue, supporting empty home owners in whatever capacity is needed to get their homes back to occupation."

Since January 2015, over 100 empty homes have been brought back into use as a result of the city council's involvement.

Councillor Hiller added: "The council has also been recently successful in two cases where empty dwelling management orders have been used to take over the management of properties which lay empty for a combined period of 30 years.

"After receiving national recognition last year for the work carried out by the empty homes officer, the service has developed into one that reaps rewards for owners, the neighbourhoods and the council alike."

Adam Cliff, empty homes officer at the city council, added: "We’re currently working on a further two applications for empty dwelling management orders, but this is of course a last resort where negotiations with owners have failed.

"We believe it is unacceptable to leave property empty for an unreasonable amount of time and to allow it to deteriorate and become a blight on a neighbourhood, especially when housing demand is high in Peterborough."

If you own an empty home, or are interested in ways in which you can bring your empty home back into use, contact the empty homes officer on 01733 864127, you can also report an empty home online.

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