THE Vale council has begun an ambitious programme of work to increase affordable housing provision that will see more than 500 council properties built over the next five years.

As part of a broader initiative to meet demand, further affordable homes are being delivered in conjunction with housing associations or as part of market developments.

Two sites that will provide social housing for a range of residents are already under construction.

Brecon Court, in Barry, is a 28-property project consisting of both accommodation for older persons and family homes, while elsewhere in the town, Holm View consists of 11 adapted bungalows specially designed to meet the needs of families with a disabled adult or child.

Since the start of the financial year, 177 affordable homes have been built in the Vale.

These are a mix of social rented homes, available to rent at less than market level, and low-cost homes, which can be purchased by first-time buyers at 70 per cent of the market price.

Of these, 74 have been delivered by housing association partners, including 22 adapted homes which are more accessible for people with mobility restrictions.

The remaining 103 have been delivered by market developers as a condition of planning permission.

Vale council cabinet member for housing and building services, Cllr Margaret Wilkinson said: “To meet significant demand, we have taken huge steps to increase the number of affordable homes available for local people.

"Affordable housing accounts for an average of 30 per cent of new developments, while our house building programme will see 500 council homes built in the next five years.

"The social housing we and our partners are providing consists of modern, comfortable living spaces that in some cases has been specially designed to cater for those with mobility difficulties.

“Working together, the council, our partnered housing associations and the development industry are trying to maximise the level of affordable housing to provide safe and secure homes for people that need them.

“With house prices continuing to rise, getting on the property ladder remains a difficult challenge for many so it’s important we also take steps to address this issue.

"Hopefully the creation of more affordable homes will help in this regard.

"These properties offer the opportunity for a significant number of Vale residents to own their own home when otherwise this might not be possible.”