Increase in long term Empty Properties

Questions by Bury’s team of Liberal Democrat councillors have revealed an increase the number of long term empty properties across the Bury area.

Although the total number of empty properties in the borough has been decreasing slightly over the last four years and stands at around 2500, the number of long term empty properties ( i.e. empty for six months or more) has increased from 2015 to 2016 from just over 900 properties to 1050.

This question was raised by Lib Dem Councillor Tim Pickstone:
“We’re extremely concerned about the number of empty properties in the borough. 2,500 houses is the equivalent of ‘half a council ward’, which is a massive area – especially when the Council has recently signed up to plans which will see so much of our green belt land destroyed to build 12,000 new houses”.

Our strong view is that BEFORE we build on our green belt land we must:
– bring back into use empty properties
– complete the significant number of existing planning permissions
– bring forward ‘brown field’ sites for housing and jobs.

I would be interested to hear your thoughts on this.