In a letter to the Empty Homes Network, Stephen Williams, the Minister for Empty Homes has turned down our plea for an extension of the current Empty Homes Programme beyond 31st March 2015 (reported here), whilst acknowledging the contribution of local authority empty homes officers in bringing down the total number of empties.
The letter to us reads as follows:
Thank you for your letters of 28 July to Brandon Lewis MP and I about the empty homes programme.
The Government has placed a high commitment to bring back empty homes into use and empty homes in England are now at their lowest level at just over 635,000 which is down by around a fifth since 2009 and their lowest level since 2004. There has also been a dramatic drop in the numbers of long-term vacant properties, which fell by around a third over the past 4 years, from 316,251 in 2009 to 216,050...