Peterborough City Council to convert empty building into 40+ homes for the homeless

An empty building is to be converted into a block of at least 40 flats to help ease the high numbers of homelessness in Peterborough.

Monday, 13th November 2017, 5:39 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 8:55 am
A rough sleeper in St Peter's Arcade last year

Peterborough City Council is in the process of putting through a planning application for the building in Bretton Court which, if approved, would see some of the 300 plus homeless families in the city permanently housed.

The Peterborough Telegraph revealed last week that the council is planning to buy up homes in the city after the number of homeless households here increased from 97 to 328 in two years.

That total is expected to continue to rise, in part due to the full roll-out in Peterborough of the benefits system Universal Credit on Wednesday (November 15).

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Moreover, the council’s first set of budget proposals for 2018/19, which were released last Friday, state that the rising number of homeless people in Peterborough will cost the authority an extra £5.7 million to look after in three years’ time than it currently does now.

This is in part due to the council relying on B&B-type accommodation as temporary accommodation for the homeless which is less cost effective than normal accommodation.

A council spokesman said design and feasibility studies for the building in Bretton Court are currently being carried out for at least 40 two-bedroom flats/apartments which will be used as permanent homes.

A planning application will then be submitted for external works which will be submitted “in due course.”

If that is approved it will take around a year to get the properties ready to be filled, the spokesman added.