People move into first new council homes in Norwich for more than 20 years

Council leader Brenda Arthur hands over flowers to tenant Tina Smith as she becomes one of the first

Council leader Brenda Arthur hands over flowers to tenant Tina Smith as she becomes one of the first residents at Eglington Mews, the first council-owned properties to be built in the city since 1992. Picture by SIMON FINLAY. - Credit: Archant Norfolk

People have moved into the first new council homes to be built in Norwich for more than 20 years.

And City Hall leaders have pledged at least 250 over the next five years.

The keys have been handed over to tenants who have moved into Norwich City Council's eight new flats at Eglington Mews in Catton Grove.

And that makes them the first tenants to move into newly-built city council housing since 1992, when council homes were built in Singer Court.

One of the first new occupiers is Tina Smith. The 58-year-old did not have far to move, having previously lived in Sleaford Green, just around the corner from her new home.

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To mark the milestone, she was handed a bouquet of flowers by Norwich City Council leader Brenda Arthur, and said she was very happy with her new home.

Ms Arthur said she was delighted that two decades of not building council homes had come to an end with the new flats, which cost about £750,000. They were designed by architects Barefoot and Giles and built by Dove Jeffery Homes Ltd.

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She said: 'Local authorities across the country face real challenges as budgets are cut, but even in these difficult times Norwich has taken some bold steps and refinancing our housing revenue account is enabling us to build more homes for the many people on our growing waiting lists.

'Our stated target is 250 homes in the next five years but we will be pressing current ministers and shadow ministers to help us increase that number.

'New homes also mean new jobs and apprenticeships and that is good for people who want work and good for our economy too. 'These homes are the first of many which will enhance our city, but most importantly, will provide the people of Norwich with efficient and therefore cheaper to run homes which meet their needs now and in the future.'

The flats have been built on land which was once part of Pointers Field. As well as the city council flats, the site also includes another four two-bed houses which are being sold on a shared ownership basis by Orwell Housing Association.

• Are you pleased more council housing is being built in Norwich? Write, giving full contact details, to Letters Editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE.

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