Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : Derelict land to be transformed into new homes in boost for local regeneration [November 2022]

The press release issued by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities on 19 November 2022.

  • Up to £35 million allocated to help councils transform unused sites into high-quality, new homes
  • 59 regeneration projects from Exeter to Sunderland set to support thousands of new jobs, drive local growth and level up the country
  • Forms the first phase of £180 million Brownfield Land Release Fund which will continue to be rolled out over next two years

Thousands of new homes will be built on derelict land to create thriving communities and help level up the country, the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities announced today (19 November 2022).

Almost £35 million from the £180 million Brownfield Land Release Fund 2 has been allocated to 41 councils to help kickstart regeneration in towns and cities.

The funding will bring unloved, council-owned land back into use, by transforming redundant industrial sites, disused car parks and derelict buildings into new places for people to live.

A total of 59 regeneration projects from Exeter to Sunderland will see over 2,200 homes – including over 800 affordable homes – built for local communities. This will help more young people and families onto the housing ladder and generate up to 7000 new jobs in housing and construction.

The new fund, announced today, forms part of the government’s plan to level up the country – ensuring local areas can achieve their full potential, while also protecting the country’s green spaces.

Minister for Housing Rt Hon Lucy Frazer said:

We are helping local communities transform unwanted, urban eyesores into thriving places that people are proud to call home.

Regeneration is at the heart of our levelling up mission and this new brownfield first fund will help communities across the country unlock disused, council-owned sites to build more of the right homes in the right places”

Cabinet Office Minister Alex Burghart said:

This funding is absolutely crucial for stimulating growth and forms part of a push across the whole of government to get the UK economy moving.

Unused land such as this is ripe for investment and I’m thrilled we’re opening the door for more than 2,200 new property owners to potentially take their first step onto the property ladder.

This funding is great news for businesses, it’s great news for industry and it’s even better news for local people in these communities who are seeing housing and jobs moving to their area.”

Local areas were invited to bid for a share of the first round of funding from the new scheme. The remaining £140 million is to be allocated over the next two years – creating up to 17,600 new homes in total across the country, as well as support up to 54,000 jobs in the sector.

Cllr James Jamieson, Chairman of the Local Government Association, said:

We are delighted to be a key partner in supporting the Government’s £180m Brownfield Land Release Fund (BLRF2).

Councils play a vital role in driving progress to provide more and better housing, and the awarding of this fund will ensure English councils unlock their brownfield land for new homes and deliver local housing priorities.

With built-in support from the One Public Estate programme, councils can tackle complex and challenging brownfield sites to benefit their communities.”

This scheme builds on the success of the first Brownfield Land Release Fund, which saw £77 million help councils release over 160 brownfield sites for around 7,750 new homes across the country.

Today’s allocations will now support the transformation of more previously developed, council-owned sites, by funding infrastructure and remediation work to release the land for new homes. Examples include:

  • Lancaster – one of two successful projects will see over £1.6 million will transform the city centre with 140 new homes, including new affordable homes, cultural venues, and facilities to the Canal Quarter regeneration area.
  • Hull – £175,000 will release land to deliver 10 new affordable homes for the local community, as part of the city’s regeneration drive.
  • Mid-Devon – a total of £280,000 will release land for two modular, affordable housing sites in Tiverton and Cullompton to build 14 quality, low-carbon homes for the community.
  • Great Yarmouth – £219,155 for one of two successful projects will boost the city centre by helping to transform old industrial buildings into 32 high-quality affordable homes, turning the area into a vibrant place for people to live.

Increasing housing supply is central to the levelling up agenda and supports the government’s ongoing target to deliver 300,000 new homes a year. Just before the pandemic in 2019/20 over 242,000 homes were delivered – the highest number for over 30 years.