A home improvement fund is being launched to complete the final phase of the Welsh Streets regeneration scheme in the Toxteth area of Liverpool.
Last week, Liverpool City Council’s cabinet approved the creation of a £750,000 fund to help ensure privately owned properties are upgraded. The aim is to complement other refurbishment schemes in the historic neighbourhood, which had once been earmarked for demolition before the Government cancelled the Housing Market Renewal initiative in 2010.
The aim of the grant, which goes live in March, is to assist home owners in improving the efficiency of their property such as a new roof, loft insulation and windows, as well as improving internal services like a renewed kitchen or a renewed central heating system.
“The regeneration of the Welsh Streets community is one of the city’s great success stories of the past decade and required a huge amount of partnership working to transform a collapsed idea into an award-winning scheme,” said Councillor Lynnie Hinnigan, deputy mayor of Liverpool and the council’s cabinet member for housing.
“The people living in the Welsh Streets have been on a huge roller-coaster ride from bordering on seeing their homes demolished and being rehoused to seeing their Victorian homes being spectacularly re-engineered to 21st century standards.
“We are now entering the final phase of this dramatic transformation and there is a clear need to support those who have bought their properties in this area of the Welsh Streets and give the same type of support to those who rent and are being catered for by the housing association.
“This home improvement grant will also help complete the overall aesthetic look of these streets and ensure all those living in the Welsh Streets can take pride in this amazing regeneration scheme.”
A total of 154 Victorian-era terraced properties in Phase 3 of the Welsh Streets are currently being refurbished, the majority of which by housing association Plus Dane as part of a £17.4 million programme to modernise homes in Toxteth. A further 200 properties have been revamped in phases 1 and 2, by developer Place First.
Plus Dane has recently completed a pilot scheme of seven units at Gwydir Street and has begun the follow up phases to refurbish a further 125 council and Plus Dane owned properties. This programme will include two-into-one conversions, external enveloping and internal refurbishment and will result in 100 fully refurbished new homes for their tenants.