Council up for housing award

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The district council has been shortlisted for a national award recognising its approach to affordable housing.

Derbyshire Dales District Council has been shortlisted in the ‘Strategic Local Authority of the Year’ category in the

UK Housing Awards 2014.

Leader Councillor Lewis Rose said: “The good news is that in these financially challenging times we are better than most at securing grant funding for the benefit of our residents.

“We are delighted to have won £17.5million new housing investment in a government programme to deliver 164 homes in 2014/15, and in the past year we have enabled development of 68 new affordable homes while gaining planning consent for a further 63.

“What’s more, a hardship fund introduced for the most vulnerable in the Dales has prevented 725 households from becoming homeless through direct intervention by partner agencies that we fund. We’re also proud to have supported 117 vulnerable people through our innovative Escape Project.”

The authority has recently put in place measures to support people affected by welfare reform. It has managed debt totalling £604,333 between April and September last year through its debt advice service, focusing on social housing tenants affected by welfare reform and has ensured new a council tax benefit scheme lessens the burden on low income households.

The UK Housing Awards are organised by the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) and Inside Housing magazine. Now in their eighteenth year, this year’s awards attracted more than 250 entries from all over the UK. The winners will be revealed at a ceremony in London on April 29.

CIH chief executive Grainia Long said: “We all have to do more with less and there is always room for improvement when it comes to providing the best services for residents.”