THE development of social housing at Helredale has been delayed by funding problems, it was revealed this week.
Proposals for over 100 houses at land off Helredale Gardens and St Peter’s Road were being funded by The Homes and Communities Agency to the tune of £4 million - working out at £45,000 per house.
But the government’s comprehensive spending review has seen the money slashed and just £18,000 being allocated per build.
So, in order to make up the shortfall it is being suggested that 14 of the new homes are put up for sale.
Andrew Rowe, housing manager, told Tuesday’s Cabinet meeting: “Because of the cuts it has created a huge funding gap, a £2million to £2.5 million shortfall.
“There are some big implications and a new innovative needed to be adopted by Yorkshire Coast Homes if we were to meet the original intention.
“The receipts from the sale of theses will be recycled back into the pot. It will take 40 years to break even so they are taking out a big financial risk.
“The reason we have brought this to Cabinet is the traditional approach has been 100 per cent affordable.”
He added that SBC and Yorkshire Coast Homes will be working together to make sure that the houses for rent are allocated to Whitby families.
He also said they were looking at the current housing tenants to see if people living in houses too big for their needs could downsize therefore freeing up more properties.
Coun Bill Chatt added: “This will be the first land that we own with homes for sale but it is not the only place it has happened.
“The important thing is that we achieve some affordable homes for people, especially in Whitby.
“When we had that meeting at the Spa, Coun Joe Plant asked about the local lettings policy and this is tying that all together now.”
The legal bid to have Helredale playing fields registered as a village green, preventing them from being built on is still on going.
Helredale Neighbourhood Council (HNC) were told it could not have the land safeguarded and have been turned down at several appeal hearings.
But, now the group is appealing against the decision to refuse anymore appeals and it awaiting the verdict.