An innovative scheme to bring some of North Ormesby’s empty homes back into use, and improve the quality of affordable rental accommodation, has recently converted two long-standing commercial properties that have been transformed into a two-bed house and two separate flats.
In partnership with Middlesbrough Council, Thirteen is delivering the ‘Empty Homes’ scheme to unlock the potential of empty homes across North Ormesby, supporting the regeneration and sustainability of the area. It came about following concern from people in the community about the number of empty homes in North Ormesby.
The partnership, assisted by Home England grant, has already renovated 21 empty properties as part of the scheme. Work has included new doors, windows, kitchens, central heating, roofing and bathrooms, and painting and decorating.
People who are unemployed or struggling to gain skills in the construction industry have also been offered places to train with mentors to refurbish the empty homes, with the potential for some of them to go on to be awarded an apprenticeship. This includes Callum Hadley, who joined Warsett, one of the schemes contractors, as an apprentice joiner following support from Thirteen’s employability team.
David Murray, Thirteen’s regeneration empty homes co-ordinator, says, “We’re really proud to be working alongside partners to deliver this fantastic scheme, which is not only bringing long-term empty properties back into use as homes and helping the many people who need housing, but it’s also regenerating neighbourhoods too.
“We’re passionate about making a real difference to the communities such as those across North Ormesby offering the right homes and creating neighbourhood’s people really want to live in.
“As well as creating much-needed quality housing, this project is providing opportunities for work and training to local people, to equip them for future employment. So, it’s fantastic to see apprentices such as Callum learning new skills on this project, and we’re especially proud that he secured his apprenticeship at Warsett through Thirteen’s employability scheme.”