Sheffield council’s tough line on Page Hall

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Families are at risk of being evicted from their homes when new housing regulations come into force, according to Sheffield` residents.

The city’s first selective licensing scheme – designed to alleviate unrest in the Page Hall area – has been approved.

Under new rules private landlords at more than 500 households must apply for a licence and will be inspected regularly by council officers. There will also be tighter restrictions on the number of residents allowed to live in each property.

Plans were developed after calls for action over litter, gangs and overcrowded housing in Page Hall from an influx of Roma Slovak migrants.

But some local residents fear they are at risk of being turfed out under the scheme.

Assam Asharaf, a resident of Fir Vale for 34 years, said: “The report says that no more than four people can live in a two-bedroomed house – that means families are facing eviction as soon as the rules come in.

“Why not use the money to employ a housing enforcement officer to work in the local advice centre? Problems with litter cannot be solved by selective licensing but they can if someone was enforcing the Anti-Social Behaviour Act.

“My mum and dad had four children in a two-bedroomed house – one went on to be a teacher and one went on to be a heart and lung specialist at the Northern General Hospital.”

Deputy leader Coun Harry Harpham, said: “Residents and businesses are overwhelmingly in favour of this scheme. The council has to do something but this requires work from all agencies.”