North Norfolk District Council has called for the government to take urgent action to help ease the region’s worsening housing crisis.

There are currently 2,488 households on the council’s housing list, with 572 of these being in urgent need.

Homelessness has risen by 40pc in north Norfolk in the last year, with 182 households either already homeless or threatened with homelessness.

Of these households, 65 are now in temporary accommodation, with each costing the council £700 a week. This comes at a cost to the local authority, which is only able to claim £98 of the cost back.

Because of this, the council’s projected spend on temporary accommodation this year is £1.3m, compared to £371,000 last year.

North Norfolk News: Homes in north Norfolk - pictured is Jetty Street in CromerHomes in north Norfolk - pictured is Jetty Street in Cromer (Image: Antony Kelly/ Newsquest)

A further 154 households are living in unsanitary, overcrowded or unsatisfactory housing this winter, with 236 households needing to move into suitable homes for medical reasons and disabilities.

READ MORE: World's biggest offshore wind farm will be built 75 miles off Cromer coast

Now, the council has sent an open letter to the secretary of state for levelling up, housing and communities Michael Gove desperately calling for help.

The letter asks for the local housing allowance to be increased to realistic levels for north Norfolk, in line with private rental amounts.

It also calls for the government to support local councils to buy land for affordable housing developments, and for changes to national planning policy so developers offer more affordable homes in the future.

North Norfolk News: Tim Adams, North Norfolk District Council leaderTim Adams, North Norfolk District Council leader (Image: NNDC)

READ MORE: Nine Norfolk rivers at serious risk of flooding as county prepares for Storm Pia

Councillor Tim Adams, leader of the council, said: “We are heartened that this letter has received cross-party support across the council with the unanimous support of councillors, reflecting the outcome of the Eastbourne Virtual Housing Summit in October attended by 158 councils. 

“This demonstrates the scale of this challenge nationwide, and the impacts facing numerous families currently, which is also leaving local government finances in a precarious position.”