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Green light given for 2,000 new homes creating 5,000 jobs

Housing minister John Healey today gave the green light for over 2,000 new council homes that will create over 5,000 construction jobs.

Despite the recession this is the biggest council house building programme for almost two decades. Around 47councils, covering every region of the country, will receive a share of £127 million Government funding to help build the homes.

They will match funding bringing total investment to over £250 million. Mr Healey said that construction will begin on the first sites before the end of the year and he will announce a second wave of projects in the autumn.

This major cash injection is part of the Prime Minister’s £1.5 billion housing pledge announced in Building Britain’s Future in June. This commitment to housing will help build the homes the country needs, help people into jobs and help the country through the recession.

Today’s funding comes on top of cash announced in July to get building work on hundreds of stalled housing developments back on track.

Around 80 per cent of the new council homes announced today will be built to standards well above that required by building regulations helping to cut CO2 emissions and reduce energy bills for the families that live in them.

Mr Healey said: “We have committed to use the power of Government investment to help Britain through the recession. This boost for affordable housing will help build the homes we need and it’s also a shot in the arm for the construction industry creating over five thousand jobs.

“This cash injection, along with plans I have already announced to give councils greater control of their housing finances and more leeway in how they run their waiting lists, means councils are better placed than for decades to meet the housing needs of their communities.”