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Government figures prove that second home ownership in much of Cumbria is 'excessive'

December 3, 2008 3:24 PM

Communities are becoming nonviable due to high levels of second home ownership according to local MP Tim Farron.

Following the release of figures revealed in a parliamentary question which placed Cumbria with the second largest second home population in the country (behind Cornwall) , Mr Farron has called on the government to take the problem seriously.

The figures show that 3.4% of all dwellings across Cumbria are second homes, almost 3 times the national average which is 1.3%. However, in many communities in the Lake District and the Cumbrian Yorkshire Dales, that figure is around 50% or even above.

Commenting Mr Farron said:

"It comes as no surprise that second home ownership is so high in Cumbria, but because these figures are taken by council tax returns it's almost certainly an underestimate.

"The Government needs to acknowledge that many of our rural communities are struggling to survive given such a high proportion of properties that stand empty for much of the year. Large numbers of properties that are not lived in, means that demand for local services is reduced. The consequences are a loss of post offices, village schools, public transport services and local pubs."