BROMSGROVE Council has pledged to help with a £60,000 boost to increase the number of emergency shelters for rough sleepers across Worcestershire - but there will not be any in town.

Bromsgrove District Council, along with Worcestershire authorities, has awarded a contract to support people at risk of homelessness to Caring for Communities and People (CCP).

Help to prevent single people or childless couples who are at risk of homelessness will rise to £301,500 a year, an increase of £61,500.

The county-wide service has been commissioned by district councils across Worcestershire, and will be jointly funded and managed by them and Worcestershire County Council.

It will see the number of emergency shelters for rough sleepers across Worcestershire rise from two to five.

The shelters will be based in Worcester, Malvern, Evesham, Kidderminster, and Redditch.

The existing two shelters are in Worcester and Redditch - while locations have not yet been agreed for the other three towns.

Bromsgrove District Council leader Karen May said: “Risk of homelessness is of grave concern and this is a great example of us all working together to ensure early intervention and support is in place for our residents who otherwise could face a life on the streets.

“We are already working with CCP in providing a Rough Sleeper Outreach Service in the district and this new service will provide further co-ordinated work in the prevention of homelessness and rough sleeping in the district.

“While in Bromsgrove we have minimal reports of rough sleepers, this contract means that it is even less likely that people will be homeless in our district and have easier access to shelter when the weather gets colder .”

The new contract with CCP will run from this October to the end of September 2021.

It will be governed and managed by a county-wide group of officers.

The Advertiser reported earlier this year that the council was quizzed what exactly it was doing to ensure safety amongst those living rough on the streets and to prevent deaths.

Labour councillor Peter McDonald said he was concerned regarding the health and wellbeing of those sleeping rough in the district of Bromsgrove.

Speaking at the time he said: "Rough sleeping is rising across the UK. Not enough is being done to address this.

"There’s a huge number of homeless people with real significant mental health issues like schizophrenia, bipolar and unfortunately there just isn’t the sort of support for those people like there used to be. The growing homelessness crisis is the legacy of austerity but that is no excuse for local authorities not having measures in place to help them.”