Big north Norfolk housing spend planned

North Norfolk's housing association will continue to plough millions of pounds into building and improving home, guaranteeing more work for the area's construction workers.

North Norfolk's housing association will continue to plough millions of pounds into building and improving home, guaranteeing more work for the area's construction workers.

Victory Housing Trust, which manages more than 4,700 properties in north Norfolk, plans to spend �28m over the next 12 months - including �8.5m on building 48 new homes and nearly �9m on home improvements like replacing kitchens and fixing roofs.

Chief executive John Archibald said the figures, which are a repeat of last year's budget, demonstrated the trust's determination to support the community.

He said: 'In times of economic downturn, it is more important than ever that we invest money in improving the local community.'

The Federation of Master Builders, which represents about 200 building companies in Norfolk, said the continued investment would buy those firms picking up the contracts breathing space while they waited for the economy to improve.

Helen Osgood, regional director, said: 'I think it's positive news for the companies and those people working for them. It means they can keep people on.'

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The �28m includes a new 'recession-motivated budget' which aims to tackle problems specifically linked to the downturn, including fuel poverty.

Victory spokesman Andy Newman said �400,000 would be spent on making homes more energy efficient, providing debt advice and investing in apprenticeships.

The budget will also help maintain the pace of the trust's programme of ongoing improvements. When it took over the housing stock in 2006, Victory set itself a six-year deadline for completing the work and is already ahead of schedule.

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