A priest has admitted stealing tens of thousands of pounds donated to his church in County Durham
North East Families 'Priced Out' Of New-Build Homes
A charity is warning 7 in 10 families in the North East can't afford new-build properties being built
A new report by Shelter, suggests a "rigged" system favours big developers and land traders rather than families, as it sets out a new model for building homes
It claims the current system of house building in England is failing families by producing high-priced and poor-quality homes.
The report contains evidence that typical new homes built today are out of reach for eight in ten (83%) working private renting families across the country - even if they used the government's Help to Buy scheme.
In the North East, 72% of families are not able to afford to buy an average-priced new home.
Alongside being unaffordable, many new build homes are also poor quality. In research by Shelter and YouGov, half (51%) of new home owners in England say they have experienced major problems with their properties including issues with construction, unfinished fittings and faults with utilities.
Graeme Brown, Shelter's interim chief executive, said: "Big developers and land traders are making millions from a rigged system while families struggle with huge renting costs and have to give up on owning a home of their own, which has become nothing more than a pipe dream.
"For decades we've relied on this broken system and, despite the sweeteners offered to developers to build the homes we need, it simply hasn't worked. The current way of building homes has had its day and it has failed the nation.
"The only way to fix our ever-growing housing crisis is for the government to champion a bold new approach which responds to communities to build the genuinely affordable, beautiful homes they want - as we have done as a country in the past. Until this happens, millions of ordinary families across the country will continue to pay the price."
Police investigating the murder of a man in Whitley Bay are continuing to question one man
A 6ft 6ins car dealer has avoided jail, after he was accused of driving, while stood up across the Tyne Bridge
Police say the burned body of a three-year-old Shih Tzu called Charlie, was found in Walker in Wednesday
Most Viewed Pictures On Heart
Recently Played Tracks
To listen live, choose your preferred station:
Now playing: Non-stop hit music
Deposit £10 to get a £40 Welcome Bonus - That's £50 to play bingo, slots and more!*
Over 50 tracks to make you feel-good. New album out now...
Find your local four day weather report here.
Make Heart the soundtrack to your day and you could be a winner with great prizes up for grabs throughout the day.