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East Belfast DUP MLA Robin Newton has urged the Northern Ireland Housing Executive to ensure proper communication with residents about their plans for the demolition of two tower blocks in his constituency.

Mr Newton said, “The demolition of Clarawood House and Kilbroney House received approval at NIHE’s recent board meetings, 31 March and 28 April respectively. This decision needs to be rubber stamped by the Department for Communities, likely to be approved in June/July. This is an early phase of the NIHE’s 10 year tower block strategy within the east of the city.

Residents who have bought their flats or who have mortgages will need to enter into negotiations with NIHE.

It is the intention of NIHE to provide public sector homes on the footprint of the sites. However, given the size of the sites it is unlikely all tower block residents will be rehoused in the newly built homes.

This decision, while not unexpected, will cause concern for many residents. I urge the Northern Ireland Housing Executive to maintain good lines of communication with and support for residents.”