Bright future for Granby Four Streets

Plans to transform housing in the Granby Four Streets – bringing more than 100 homes back into use – are moving forward.

The Mayoral Cabinet has endorsed a three-year vision, setting out the £14 million regeneration of the area.

It will see the city council working in partnership with key partners Liverpool Mutual Homes and Plus Dane Group to refurbish 95 properties – on Beaconsfield Road, Cairns Street, Ducie Street and Jermyn Street.

Local organisations will also play a major part in the programme. The Granby Community Land Trust (CLT), set up by local residents, has developed proposals to refurbish 10 properties on Cairns Street and create a community ‘hub’; and the Northern Alliance Housing Co-op, has drawn up plans to refurbish a further five properties on Cairns Street.

The pioneering Homes for a Pound scheme will also support the work to bring empty properties back into use, with the first £1 house allocated on Cairns Street last October, and more expected to be announced in the area this year.

A range of funding is now in place to deliver the refurbishment programme, including ‘Cluster of Empty Homes’ and ‘Empty Homes Round 2’ grants, and funding from the Registered Housing Providers. In addition the CLT and Co-op have secured private finance and Nationwide Foundation funding for the delivery of their schemes.

In total, it secures over £13.7million investment for the Granby area and will bring at least 110 properties back into use by 2015, including 99 vacant council-owned properties.

Assistant Mayor and Cabinet Member for Housing, Councillor Ann O’Byrne, said: “Driving up the quality of housing in Granby Four Streets is a major priority for us. We know residents have waited too long to see the regeneration of the area, but we are now beginning to make making significant progress.

“Through this vision, we aim to deliver the good quality housing the area needs. We want to retain and refurbish as much of the existing built fabric as possible, and celebrate the area’s character, so that we can build a strong, sustainable and thriving future for the neighbourhood.

“There’s a lot of work to do, but there’s a real commitment from all partners to deliver this programme, and we can now look ahead with optimism for the future of the Granby Four Streets. This is an exciting time for the area, and we’ll be making sure the community is fully involved in our plans at every step of the way.”

As well as the refurbishment programme, a procurement process is now underway to appoint a private sector partner who can work with the city council to develop proposals for a refurbishment/new-build scheme for cleared land on the south side of Ducie Street.

Director of Assets and Enterprise at LMH, Maggi Howard, said: “We are committed to regenerating housing across Liverpool and are keen to play our part bringing empty homes in Granby Four Streets back into use – there is huge demand for high quality affordable homes in the city.

“It is a major and complex scheme that will involve a lot of partnership working.

“It will transform the area, build on Granby’s history and not only create a neighbourhood local residents deserve but one they can be proud to call home once again.”

The first phase of work– the refurbishment of properties on Beaconsfield Street West by Plus Dane Group – is expected to begin this month. It is estimated that the refurbishment programme will be completed in March 2015.

Granby resident Elizabeth Robinson-Ramos, who last year moved into a home, with her husband Paul, which had been refurbished by Plus Dane Group on Beaconsfield Street, said: “I’m delighted to see that plans are progressing that will help to make Granby an even better place to live.

“My husband Paul has lived in Granby all his life and I moved to the area some years ago and we both love it here, so it’s great to see plans being taken forward to develop and regenerate the area and refurbish homes that local people need. We moved into one of the new homes on Beaconsfield Street last year and absolutely love it so I can’t wait to see more homes being brought back to life.”

The Granby Four Streets vision supports the Mayor’s aim to bring empty 1,000 empty properties back into use by 2015. It is also supporting his priority to create 20,000 jobs for local people, by securing new employment and training opportunities within the construction sector.