Welsh temporary home use doubles

The number of households living in temporary accommodation in Wales has more than doubled in two years.

New figures from the Welsh assembly show there were 3,300 households in temporary homes in March 2005 – up from about 1,500 in the first quarter of 2003.

One-third, including 389 families with children, were living in hostels, refuges and bed and breakfasts. But the number of people living in B&Bs has recently dropped to 761, compared with a high of 879 in September 2004.

The rise can be attributed to a doubling in the number of people accepted by councils as homeless over the past four years.

Nearly 10,000 households – just under half with dependent children or a pregnant family member – were accepted as homeless in 2004-5.

Meanwhile, an influx of 2,500 industrial workers to Pembrokeshire is believed to have caused a substantial rise in the number of people presenting as homeless in the area. Their higher wages have led to private sector rents doubling, making it difficult for local people to afford to live in the area.

Pembrokeshire Care Society has seen a 19 per cent increase in the past three months in the number of people approaching it for help.

A spokesperson for Pembrokeshire Council said: “There is anecdotal evidence of private sector landlords ending private rented sector tenancies to switch to letting to workers because of the higher rents that can be achieved.”

See figures at www.wales.gov.uk

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