Commenting on the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee report into social housing, Crispin Truman, chief executive of CPRE, the countryside charity, said:
‘It has never been more important to deliver better quality and genuinely affordable homes for everyone and that needs to include rural communities. Not only are decent homes vital for our health and wellbeing, but affordable and socially rented homes make communities more resilient. Our recent analysis revealed a shocking 96% of rural areas are unaffordable for care workers on private rents. Investing in genuinely affordable homes in rural areas will ensure more key workers can live in the areas they serve and services in those areas can recruit the key workers they need.
‘But the dismal building rates of good quality social housing in rural areas is a scandal that has been ignored by the government for too long. We welcome the committee’s report and urge the government to make social houses for key workers a key part of the recovery from the coronavirus pandemic by ramping up building rates of well-designed, truly affordable and socially rented housing in rural areas as part of the levelling-up agenda. Only then will a fair recovery to the coronavirus pandemic in the countryside be in our sights.’