AN INNOVATIVE programme to build 370 affordable homes in the Staffordshire Moorlands has been shortlisted for a prestigious national award.
Ascent Housing LLP is a partnership between Staffordshire Moorlands District Council and Your Housing, formed to bridge the ever widening gap between the demand for and availability of affordable housing.
The council's role in the partnership has been recognised at this year's UK Housing Awards with a shortlisting in the Strategic Local Authority of the Year category.
Councillor Sybil Ralphs, leader of the council, said: "We know the beneficial impact that being able to afford to live in a quality home close to family, friends and employment has on people's lives, and through the Ascent partnership we're working with communities to provide opportunities for everyone to have access to exactly this type of housing.
"Whilst being recognised by our industry peers and partners is always welcome, our motivation for getting involved in the Ascent partnership is to develop sustainable communities across the Moorlands and affordable housing is fundamental to that aim."
Ascent is also investing in local communities including building a new community centre in Haregate and facilities for people and families with learning difficulties and physical disabilities.
The programme is supporting local people to develop skills to help them find employment in the district with the creation of over 40 apprenticeships during the life of the project.
Councillor Gill Burton, cabinet member for communities, said: "Ascent is delivering on its promises not just for affordable housing but in improving the health and wellbeing of communities. We have an ambitious programme but we are committed to delivering it so that the rewards can be felt across the Moorlands."
The UK Housing Awards are the longest established and most respected awards in the social housing sector, recognising the ingenuity, creativity, passion and results of housing organisations and individuals across the UK. The winners will be announced in April.