Headlines: January 27th, 2003

Merseyside is getting a multi-million pound regeneration boost with the transfer of nearly 13,000 homes on Liverpool’s Eastern Fringe to new housing associations.The first of the three transfers taking place over the next few weeks, saw 2,833 houses in the south zone of the Eastern Fringe transferred to Lee Valley Housing Association, which will carry out a 35 million pound repair and modernisation programme during the first five years.

Lee Valley will pay Liverpool City Council just over 5 million pounds for the properties. The money will be used to fund the transfer of negative value stock elsewhere in the Eastern Fringe. The new housing association will also provide jobs through local labour agreements with the contractors who will work on the houses.

The city council also hopes to transfer its remaining Eastern Fringe stock to two further new housing associations. The Housing Minister, Tony McNulty, said the move would be part of a major regeneration boost to the region. “The next few years will see a transformation of a major part of Liverpool’s social housing, with welcome environmental benefits and a boost to local employment, as well as a comprehensive programme to bring tenants’ homes up to a decent and modern standard,” he said.

The Liverpool agreement brings the number of approved Large Scale Voluntary Transfers around the country to 167, involving more than 700,000 homes and raising more than 11 billion pounds in private finance to buy and invest in housing stock.