Plans to build five new council homes on two sites in West Bromwich have been given the green light with the awarding of a building contract by Sandwell Council. The £1.09 million scheme will see the much-needed homes built on two council-owned sites by J Harper & Sons Ltd.

Two four-bedroom houses and a bungalow adapted for wheelchair use will be built in Bull Lane, with another two two-bedroom bungalows being built at Albion Road. The Albion Road development replaces a block of three one-bedroom bungalows – which previously had to be demolished due to subsidence issues – and will be repositioned to avoid the poor ground conditions. The scheme is part of the authority’s three year plan to invest £70 million in building 650 new council homes across the borough.

Councillor Keith Allcock, Sandwell’s cabinet member for homes, said: “It’s good news that we have awarded this contract and we can get on with building these new council homes which will add to the council’s stock of affordable housing. There is a continuing demand for affordable homes, especially family houses and bungalows in Sandwell.

“The development will also provide job and training opportunities and result in improvements to the local area.”

Cllr Maria Crompton, Sandwell’s deputy council leader, added: “We’ve invested around £70 million in the past three years as part of our ongoing programme to build hundreds of new council homes and invest in affordable housing for local people.

“In the past 12 months, despite the pandemic, we’ve continued to work closely with our contractors – following strict Covid-19 guidelines – building 110 new council homes, with another 106 on site and due to be completed in the next six months and a further 97 in the pipeline.”

Work is expected to start on the West Bromwich sites in May this year, with the homes set to be completed by the end of the year.