On Monday 23rd March, Labour’s Shadow Planning Minister, Roberta Blackman-Woods MP, visited Rochester and Strood. She met with local campaigners to discuss the proposals for 5,000 new homes at Lodge Hill and also visited the Rochester Riverside regeneration. This was also an excellent opportunity for the Shadow minister to discuss the future of housing in Medway and understand local challenges.
Speaking following her visit, Roberta Blackman-Woods said:
‘It was great to visit Rochester & Strood today and see how the area is changing for the better. It was particularly exciting to see the Rochester Riverside regeneration, which received visionary infrastructure funding under the previous Labour government.
However, it concerns me to hear that Medway has a housing waiting list of 20,000 and has seen a steep increase in the number of people living in temporary accommodation. This has to change and Labour’s house building programme will support councils, like Medway, to tackle some of these issues head on.’
Naushabah Khan, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Rochester and Strood said:
"I was delighted to have Roberta visit Medway, and to have the opportunity to discuss some of the housing concerns we have in the area. It is vital that we tackle these and concerns and that local people have access to not only affordable but also good quality accommodation.
This requires local councils and national government to work together and support housing delivery in a way that is sensitive to the needs of the local community.’
Cllr Vince Maple, Medway Group Leader, added:
‘It was great to share with Roberta some of the pledges from the recently launched Changing Medway Together manifesto. Whether it is the creation of a social letting agency or tackling empty homes, it is Medway Labour who are prepared to tackle the housing crisis head on’