Councillors have backed a motion calling for more action to tackle issues around social housing.

Cllr Russ Bragger had highlighted the issue of a lack of “genuinely affordable” rental properties at a meeting of Lichfield District Council

His motion said:

“This council, recognising the severe shortage of decent homes to rent at genuinely affordable levels across our district, asks that the cabinet, acting on behalf of the council as shareholder in the company, requests that the council’s Local Authority Trading Company immediately draw up plans with a clear timeline for building and acquiring housing at social rents across the district and that there is liaison with a cross party working group of councillors in doing this.”

Motion proposed by Cllr Russ Bragger

The motion was passed unanimously in the council chamber.

Cllr Bragger said he was happy to see progress – but insisted action to tackle the issue should have been taken sooner:

“I was very pleased that the Tory councillors were persuaded to support my motion to get the district council to build and buy social housing across Lichfield, Burntwood and the villages.

“The current leadership have had five years to do this – if they had acted sooner Lichfield District Council would already be providing housing at affordable rents to enable low paid families to remain in the district.

“The challenge now will be to get this scheme up and running quickly. More Lichfield residents need the security of a long term settled tenancy rather than being priced out of the housing market and having to move out of the district.”

Cllr Russ Bragger, Lichfield District Council

Founder of Lichfield Live and editor of the site.

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1 month ago

Well done Cllr. Bragger. Social housing seems not to be a priority for the Tories so please keep the momentum going.

Councillor Colin Ball
1 month ago

Really great to see this Motion passed at the District Council on Tuesday evening. At long last, this is a step in the right direction. I’ve been campaigning on this since I was first elected in July 2018. Russ is spot on, though, to question why the Tories on the District Council didn’t do this much earlier. I suspect that it had a lot to do with having a massive majority, which is why they continually brushed aside my requests at many Council meetings to do this. Since May last year, when the Tories lost their majority, they now clearly have to listen to what Labour Councillors say. We will also need to keep the pressure on to make sure that they don’t now try to kick this into the long grass. There are too many people in our District needing genuinely affordable housing for rent now for us to allow that to happen.

1 month ago

@Councillor Colin Ball, if you accept that the tories are “finally” listening to Labour… Then why did you abstain on the budget? Ah, actually I think Cllr Norman explained it.. You just can’t be seen to be supporting the Conservative Party, collegiality < political pettiness.

Cllr Paul Taylor
1 month ago

@LichfieldAnon – Cllr Robertson explained it quite clearly in his speech. Whilst the leading group included a number of measures we suggested and/or supported (including the second homes Council Tax measure) there were several elements that we could not. We can welcome the new spirit of collegiality whilst demonstrating some political differences on elements.

1 month ago

@Cllr Paul Taylor, yes Cllr Robertson made some interesting points, I particularly liked that you couldn’t support the council tax increase because it wasn’t high enough. The Tories made compromises (by including, where possible Labour suggestions), so should Labour. If you cannot get on board with collegiality (which seems to be the case), where is Labour’s budget? Cllr Norman made it clear, no matter what was included in the budget you would all abstain, you cannot be seen to support the Conservative Party. You preached collegiality yet your orders from on high are to abstain.