Thrifty council spending leaves housing cash spare for extra projects in Barnsley

Unexpected savings in a £16m project to improve council homes in Barnsley means more householders will feel the benefits of improvements.

Friday, 4th October 2019, 10:57 am
Updated Friday, 11th October 2019, 11:22 am
Savings: Careful spending has allowed boiler replacement for Lambert Road tenants

Barnsley Council embarked on a project expected to cost almost £16m, through its Berneslai Homes arm which manages its stock of social housing, to make improvements to 1,288 homes.

But costs have been less than anticipated as a result of what the authority calls “general value engineering” and that has resulted in a £2.5m windfall.

Now that is being spent on improvements to some additional homes, with two other improvement projects also brought forwards to start in this financial year, instead of next.

Around 100 homes in the Lambert Road area of Kendray are having central heating boilers replaced with some of the cash, because existing fitments are reaching the end of their serviceable lives and, a report to the council’s ruling Cabinet states, have become increasingly unreliable.

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Work to other homes includes making improvements to the electricity supply.

Two further schemes, in the Mapplewell and Staincross surburbs and Silkstone will also go ahead sooner than expected because of the available cash.

That means tenants will benefit from improved homes earlier than expected.