A SUNDERLAND-born architect is set to present a new TV show to campaign for decent but cheaper housing.
George Clarke, who was born in Pallion, will front the new Channel Four series, provisionally named The Empty Homes Show.
The show is calling for empty properties to be made available as affordable homes, and George is calling for Wearsiders who are looking for better housing to get involved.
The campaign will offer people the chance to share their housing problems and join the search for solutions.
The show, from Tiger Aspect Productions, looks at issues such as high rental costs, long waiting lists for council houses and the difficulties of getting a mortgage, which are forcing people to live in cramped conditions, stay with friends or family, or give up the dream of owning their own home.
George, who recently accepted a Honorary Fellowship from the University of Sunderland for his contribution to architecture, said: “Britain is suffering a national housing crisis.
“Ordinary families are being priced out of the market, and with an estimated two million in housing need, it’s crazy that almost a million homes in this country lie empty.
“The figures just don’t add up and it’s time to put these empty houses to better use.”
The show will be the latest from George in a TV career which first took off in 2004 when he filmed three series of Build A New Life in the Country for Channel Five.
He then moved to Channel 4 with the launch of The Home Show in 2008 and then Restoration Man in 2009.
The new show aims to take a closer look at the housing issues in George’s hometown area and then expand the show by looking at the issues nationally.
If anyone is struggling with housing issues and would like to get involved with the show, or wants to find out more about the campaign, call 0207 544 1633 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.