Connexus, the social housing association which absorbed South Shropshire Housing, is about to start a major refurbishment of housing on Sandpits Avenue. In all, 77 homes will be refurbished with new flooring, insulation and heating.
Tracey Huffer, Shropshire Councillor for Ludlow East says:
“It is great news that this work is getting underway at last. These houses are far behind modern standards but they are sound enough to last several decades once they have been refurbished.
“The work will be disruptive but it will be worth the inconvenience to bring these aging properties up to modern standards. The properties will be far more energy efficient and the problems of damp will be got rid of.
“The gardens will be undisturbed and that will be good news for residents who have worked hard to create lovely gardens. Several of the houses have aviaries and these will not be disturbed during construction.”
The work will take around two years. As the refurbishment progresses, families will be moved from their existing property into one of the newly refurbished properties. Once their home is refurbished, they will be moved back again.
New bathrooms will be installed and the walls will be insulated with external cladding which will be rendered to match the existing style of the buildings.
The ground floors of the houses will have under floor heating with upstairs being heated. The gas fired boilers will be the most efficient. Connexus recognises that there might be a requirement to switch to air source heat pumps in the future but there is no plan for heat pumps at this stage or for solar panels.
The first social housing in Sandpits was built under the Addison Act, an ambitious attempt to provide council housing after the First World War. Further housing was added in the subsequent decades. There has been a lack of improvement and maintenance of these properties in recent years. Many of the properties have problems with damp. That is why such a major scheme is being prioritised now.
The cost of the project will come from Connexus reserves and there is no intention of selling the houses after they have been refurbished.
Empty Homes in Ludlow
There are 72 properties in the SY8 1 post code which have been empty for six months or longer.
Bromford and Wrekin housing associations did not have any empties in Ludlow last June. Shropshire Council is seeking information from Marches but it has only a small number of properties in Ludlow.
Connexus has 26 empty homes including five routine empty properties (four currently under offer, one pending advertising). This includes 13 homes in Sandpits.
Shropshire Council does not own any homes in Ludlow.