The future of homeless supportive housing is again uncertain following the decision of the planning committee

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The future of homeless support housing in Newport is now uncertain after Isle of Wight council rejected its demand to remove a ‘safety net’ deadline.

Deciding in favor of Castle Road residents who opposed the project, the council planning committee voted to maintain a condition that limits a multiple occupancy house (HMO) on Castle Road to operate for three years.

The committee did this to ensure that the Two Saints candidates were operating according to best practices and properly handling any issues.

Funding issues
However, plans have stalled since the initial authorization was granted in July, due to funding complications.

Two Saints hoped to receive money from Homes England to purchase the Castle Lodge B&B, make changes and charge affordable rent.

The three-year stipulation, however, was not welcomed by the funding body, which said it only supported projects with a longer and guaranteed 35-year lifespan.

McDermott: A Real Housing Crisis
Speaking at the planning meeting yesterday, Two Saints Regional Manager James McDermott said there was a real housing crisis on the island that will only get worse as housing prices rise. will continue to increase.

Mr McDermott said it was the last thing they thought of bringing this back to the planning committee, but wanted to confirm their commitment to the council to reduce homelessness, in line with the council’s strategy until 2024 , to make sure everyone on the island has a place they can call home.

He said the HMO will give people the opportunity to live their lives while providing significant support to the community.

Residents: Lost all confidence in Two Saints
However, a representative for the residents of Castle Road said they had lost confidence in Two Saints, but thanked the committee for initially installing the three-year probation period, providing a protective safety net for residents.

Lever: the committee must answer a simple question
Local councilor Joe Lever, who was unable to attend the meeting, said the committee only had to answer a simple question to determine whether the request should be granted – whether “the actions of Two Saints or the new information put forward has significantly resolved the concerns the committee should justify impeachment ”.

Price: Want to be convinced by Two Saints
Cllr Matthew Price, who suggested installing a time condition in June, said he came to the meeting wanting to be convinced by Two Saints, but received very little and got asked if anyone felt more comfortable than before.

Brodie: a safety net
After initially being skeptical of the three-year deadline, Cllr Geoff Brodie said her perspective on the demand changed following issues in her neighborhood with Howard’s House Assessment Hub, a homeless support center stage one of the old Barton Elementary School.

He said the three-year condition for Castle Lodge, which would be second stage homeless support, was a safety net that its residents did not get.

Jarman: The opt-out clause of the request was essential
Councilor Chris Jarman said it was made clear to him that even though the island was experiencing a housing crisis, it needed to be managed and well maintained to benefit everyone and that the opt-out clause of the request was essential .

All but one (11) councilors on the committee voted to reject the nomination, with councilor Michael Beston abstaining from voting.

Two Saints has been contacted for comment.


This article is from the BBC’s Local Democracy Reporter Service (LDRS) program, in which OnTheWight is participating. Some changes and additions may have been made by OnTheWight. Ed


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