Note: This is a longer version of the story appearing in the December printed issue, exclusive to the website.
In 2004 the Council revealed their Masterplan for regenerating the housing in Burngreave and Fir Vale. Four years on it’s achieved a good deal of demolition, but no housing has been built in its place.
Due to a lack of funding the Council no longer plan to demolish shops on Owler Lane, and four houses at the bottom Barnsley Road have had Complusory Purchase Orders removed – they were planned for demolition in order to widen the road, this will not happen now.
At the Area Panel meeting in November, residents expressed their anger and disbelief at the situation. The land made vacant at Ellesmere, Woodside, Catherine Street and Earl Marshal, must be sold to private developers, but there has been little or no interest. Discussions with a developer for Woodside were ended because they could not meet the Council’s requirements. Other sites have had no takers.
Norma Clark said “Why has it taken you so long, when the Catherine Street housing was done so quickly,”
Local resident Carrie Hedderwick said, “The problem is we’re dangling sites in front of private developers instead of the Council building the houses”
Waheed Hussain was angry with what had happened to Skinnerthorpe residents, “We want compensation for what’s happened to residents, a lot more would have gone to Earl Marshal but its taken too long and now they have gone. They were promised they would not lose out and that they would get a new house.”
The Messenger pressed the Council to be honest about the situation, “You know it will take five years to build on Earl Marshal, you have to be honest. People are still waiting to move there, it isn’t fair to keep them living on a street with crime, rubbish and demolition.”
The Council responded by saying they were keeping residents well informed and they were doing everything they could to encourage developers to build housing in the area.