Protesters in a part of the UK with high numbers of holiday lets will stage a demonstration next week demanding cheaper rents for residents and fewer holiday homes and short lets.
The protest is set for Truro in Cornwall on Saturday August 21 and has been advertised on Facebook as wanting “No more second homes. No more exorbitant rents. No more holiday lets over council homes. Enough is enough".
Newquay resident Bella Smith, described as the organiser of the protest, has told local news website Cornwall Live: "I decided to organise the demo primarily for two reasons - one, as a space for Cornish people to come together and be able to share their stories and experiences within this housing/rental crisis. Cornish people, from young people in retail to new families and near-elderly locals have been completely cut off from being able to access affordable housing.
“… The second key reason is to highlight to our six Cornwall MPs, Cornwall Council and our government in Westminster that we need urgent, substantial, material action to be taken now. No more tiny plasters onto a gaping wound. The measures being introduced by the council are nowhere near enough, they do nothing to solve the roots of the actual problem."
Protesters claim many potential long term rental units have been switched to Airbnb or other short let platforms, and say that in the popular coastal resort of Newquay - as of July 31 - there were only four properties to let advertised on Rightmove, costing £925 to £1,200 pcm.
They also claim that “dozens upon dozens” of former council homes in the county - bought under Right To Buy legislation - are now advertised on short let platforms in contravention of covenants imposed at the time of their sale.
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