VOICE OF THE FENS: by The Editor

THE decision by Roddons Housing Association to review two of their sheltered housing projects in Elm and Wisbech seems on the surface a sensible way to address the requirements of providing decent homes for the 21st century.

However it is clear that some tenants already regard consultation as a precursor to closure and we would be disappointed if this was the only option to materialise.

There are 14 sheltered housing schemes in Fenland and we understand that consultations on the future of three others are likely to begin in the near future and, again, we would not expect closure to be the only option.

It strikes us as somewhat ironic that during the debate on the transfer of Fenland’s housing stock away from the local council to a housing association considerable effort was made to attract votes from those occupants of sheltered housing. Indeed many believe their votes were critical in assembling the numbers needed to provide Fenland Council with the mandate to authorise the sell off.

It would be perverse if those very tenants who supported the transfer in the expectation that decent living conditions and a secure home would become part of their expectations for the future were to find themselves denied of the latter because of the cost of providing the former.

Councillors who now have increasingly less to do with social housing ought, perhaps, to begin taking a closer look at what Roddons is proposing and how they are going about the task.

Distressed elderly tenants is something we feel confident no one wants to see and the closer the scrutiny the less the likelihood is of this happening.

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