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Cambridge City Council tenants in ‘near-uninhabitable’ Ekin Road flats must be rehoused, argues campaign group





Council tenants living in “substandard” homes in Ekin Road in Cambridge need to be rehoused immediately, a campaign group has said.

The Save Ekin Road group has called on Cambridge City Council to rehouse families they say are living in “near uninhabitable” flats due to “severe cases of mould, damp and condensation”.

Ekin Road
Ekin Road

The council has said it is not able to immediately rehouse tenants, but urged anyone with concerns about damp and mould to get in contact.

Ekin Road has been earmarked for potential refurbishment or redevelopment into new council homes.

The Save Ekin Road group was originally founded to campaign for all of the homes to be preserved and for the city council to upgrade and repair the buildings.

The group said there had been concerns that many people could lose their homes “unnecessarily and against their wishes”.

However, the group said further information and conversations had taken place and they were now advocating for the flats to be demolished and replaced, but for the houses to be retained.

The group said a “vast majority” of people living in the flats on the estate wanted them taken down and warned the conditions in some of the flats was “dire”.

However, they said the 32 semi-detached houses in the estate were still in a good condition and argued there was no need to demolish any of them.

Some Ekin Road residents are concerned the redevelopment plans means they will lose their homes. Picture: Keith Heppell
Some Ekin Road residents are concerned the redevelopment plans means they will lose their homes. Picture: Keith Heppell

Speaking at a housing scrutiny committee this week (January 23), a representative of the group said: “Cambridge City Council must, as a matter of urgency, immediately rehouse those residents on Ekin Road who are council tenants and living in substandard, near-uninhabitable dwellings.

“There are many severe cases of mould, damp and condensation on the estate, and those families need to be rehoused immediately, by direct-let.

“No family should be living in such conditions, and they cannot wait for the investigation works by the council to conclude.”

Cllr Gerri Bird (Lab, East Chesterton), the executive councillor for housing and homelessness, responded: “We note Save Ekin Road’s support for the redevelopment of the flats and officers will also forward your points to JLL, the consultant completing the report.

Some residents in Ekin Road are upset about redevelopment plans that could mean they lose their homes. Picture: Keith Heppell
Some residents in Ekin Road are upset about redevelopment plans that could mean they lose their homes. Picture: Keith Heppell

“The final JLL report will consider three options: refurbishment, refurbishment [and] part redevelopment, and full redevelopment.

“It is important that this report is completed so the council can take on overall views of the estate.

“As the council has not approved redevelopment or refurbishment it cannot undertake immediate rehousing of tenants by direct-lets.

“Dialogue is going on with tenants and residents explaining what options we may have should redevelopment or refurbishment be approved.

Cambridge City Council is exploring options to redevelop homes in Ekin Road
Cambridge City Council is exploring options to redevelop homes in Ekin Road

“If residents have specific concerns or issues relating to damp, mould, exposure in their living space, we encourage them to contact condensation@cambridge.gov.uk.

“We look forward to meeting as many residents as possible, including those that are part of Save Ekin Road, at the next liaison group meeting in March.”



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