Mark Williams, Member of Parliament for Ceredigion and Deputy Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, has highlighted the growing problem of rural housing provision in a housing debate in the House of Commons last Tuesday.
The Liberal Democrat motion called for a series of reasonable solutions to the housing crisis to increase the availability of quality housing. These included bringing empty homes back into use, increasing support for self-build, and called for the Government to set out a long-term housing plan to meet the housing needs of future generations.
Mark said: “There is serious concern about the future of our communities unless action is taken on the crisis in rural housing. Not only does Ceredigion have above-average overcrowding in homes*, but there are serious shortages in social housing, placing real pressure on young people and young families, with many ultimately choosing to move away.
“Without young people and families choosing to live in our communities, and a growing dependence on seasonal tourism, this often leads to Post Offices closing, village shops shutting down, the local bank branch going, and the reduction in viable public transport.
“Recent statistics have shown that only 22%⁺ of people in Ceredigion are able to afford an average priced house, and unless we improve the capacity of people to have a home of their own, the enormity of the challenge for our communities will only grow larger.
“It is time for the Government to recognise the seriousness of this issue, to ensure our young people have affordable homes in which to live, and to ensure the sustainability of our communities.”