£30,000 boost for work to flats in 'homes for locals' push
- Credit: Holkham Estate
Four flats for keyworkers and locals of Wells-next-the-Sea will be refurbished thanks to a £30,000 donation.
It is hoped updating the flats in
will go some way towards addressing the housing shortage in the popular resort town, where more than one-third of properties are second homes.
Holkham Charitable Foundation has donated the money following an application by David Fennell, chairman of the housing trust Homes for Wells.
Mr Fennell said he was delighted with the generosity of the foundation and Holkham's owners Thomas and Polly Coke, the Lord and Lady Leicester.
He said: "Their award will enable us to refurbish the former Flagship homes thoroughly, with new bathrooms and kitchens and fresh decor.
"The support of Lord and Lady Leicester is a great encouragement to our trustees and will directly benefit the Wells key workers and local families who are chosen to be the new tenants.”
Mr Fennell said the flats would house local keyworkers and people with a proven connection to the town, many of whom were frontline workers such as lifeboat crew, fire service workers and healthcare workers.
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The grant will pay for the gutting and redecorating of the flats, including new bathroom and kitchen fittings, decoration, floor coverings, heating systems, garden clearance, fencing and preparations.
The plan is for the first residents to move in towards the end of March.
Lord Leicester said: “The admirable work being done by David and the team at Homes for Wells is humbling and we are pleased to be able to support them with this donation.
"The estate is inseparable from its local community and our goal is to contribute as much as possible to promote a sustainable local economy for the benefit of all the people who live and work in the area. We do this through the recently established Holkham Charitable Foundation.”
Since Homes for Wells was launched in 2006 it has housed 54 people, and there is a waiting list of 42 families who still need the trust's help.
A survey has revealed the price of a house in Wells is more than 14 times the average household income, and the proportion of second homes in the town has reached record levels of 37pc.