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Stroud named as one of the least affordable places to live in the UK

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Dursley GP, Dr Simon Opher, has called on planners, landowners and developers to work together to boost the availability of affordable housing to rent and buy in the Stroud district.

The Stroud Labour Party candidate for MP at the next general election, said. “We are fortunate to live in one of the most beautiful areas of the country. However, average house prices are high, preventing people from getting on the housing ladder. And many people have approached me as their rents have increased.

“ It’s a disaster for the thousands looking to get on the housing ladder or rent somewhere where they grew up.

“Property prices in Stroud went up by 17.8% last year, and rents by 13.7% – the second highest rise in the country – making Stroud one of the UK’s least affordable places to live.” he added. “For people on low incomes, rentals are even less affordable, with the average low income family in the region having to find nearly £4 of every £10 of their income just to cover their rent.”

Stroud resident Jenny Richards rents a two bedroom house with her working age son. Despite two incomes, they struggle to make ends meet. Local housing associations have been unable to help and they have been stuck on the council housing waiting list for 12 years. 

“I was a single parent who worked 20 hours a week when my boys were little and thought it was a struggle then. But there was always food in the cupboard and I could give them good birthday and Christmas presents and they had an annual holiday.  Now, with no dependents and a full time job, I am so much worse off.” said Ms Richards.

Dr Opher, has spoken out about the lack of affordable housing in Stroud and the need for all parties to work together  to get building and increase supply.

“Fears that building more homes locally will impact the Green Belt are misplaced.” Dr Opher continued: “There are plenty of sites around the Stroud district that would support new housing, without touching our protected green spaces, and I’m keen to meet with anyone who can help solve this problem.”

Dr Opher has committed to prioritising access to housing and home ownership if he is elected as part of a Labour Government.

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