I am pleased to say that the slum housing conditions that existed across the Midlands up to the 1960s have been eradicated, but there remains a severe shortage of affordable homes in Solihull especially for those on low incomes.
More people are living alone and more people are living longer than before, putting pressure on the existing housing stock.
The present Labour government has proposed substantial investment and building of new homes to meet that need here in Solihull and nationwide.
So where do the other political parties stand ? Our local Tory and Lib Dem MPs seem to oppose every proposal put forward, whether it is for expansion of villages and new towns or infill development in some of the substantial, often unused back gardens in Solihull. The latter policy they have branded as ‘garden grabbing’. I have never seen a garden ‘grabbed’ but some people have voluntarily and willingly sold their house and garden to replace one home with several new ones which have greater energy efficiency.
Also, they oppose development around villages where new blood is desperately needed to help keep schools, shops, post offices and pubs alive.
I largely discount the Lib Dems’ views as they opportunistically oppose anything and have as much chance of forming a government as hens growing teeth. But the Tories have aspirations to form a government, so I would be interested to know where they think the urgently-needed homes will be built.
When in government you have to be in favour of things which sometimes do not meet universal approval. Good government cannot be based on knee-jerk opposition to every proposal.