STOKE: WE DON’T WANT LON­DON­ERS

Midweek Sport - - NEWS -

AN over­crowded London bor­ough asked Stoke to find homes for their poor­est res­i­dents – only to be told, “We’re full”.

De­prived Ne­wham Coun­cil asked more than 1,000 or­gan­i­sa­tions – in­clud­ing the City of Stoke on Trent – to take in folks.

Labour-run Ne­wham has been ac­cused of “so­cial cleans­ing” over its plan to move poor tenants out of the bor­ough.

But now Stoke-on-trent has waded in, say­ing they have no room in the Pot­ter­ies for a large in­flux.

Stoke-on-trent’s Brighter Fu­tures Hous­ing As­so­ci­a­tion said the city was “al­ready un­der pres­sure”.

Gill Brown, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Brighter Fu­tures, said the as­so­ci­a­tion had been of­fered a “pre­mium price” to find accommodation for up to 500 fam­i­lies from Ne­wham.

She added: “I’m quite sur­prised and shocked that any­one would make such a pro­posal with­out re­ally think­ing care­fully about the im­pact both on the peo­ple be­ing moved up and our com­mu­ni­ties in Stoke.

“The real is­sue for us is the con­cern for vul­ner­a­ble peo­ple who are be­ing moved up.

“What about the ed­u­ca­tion ser­vices, the so­cial ser­vices, the health ser­vices and the jobs?”

Ne­wham coun­cil says it can’t af­ford to keep the fam­i­lies be­cause of the Gov­ern­ment’s hous­ing ben­e­fits cap – £400-a-week for a four-be­d­room home – and is try­ing to move them.

The bor­ough of Ne­wham – which is stag­ing the London 2012 Olympic Games – is also one of the most de­prived ar­eas in Bri­tain.

FULL TO THE BRIM: Stoke

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