Halifax MP steps in as Sowerby Bridge veteran excluded from Right to Buy discount

An army veteran from Sowerby Bridge has been excluded from a Right to Buy housing scheme discount because of a military admin policy.

Wednesday, 17th November 2021, 9:12 am
Derek Crapper at his home in Sowerby Bridge

Derek Crapper served for more than 20 years with the Royal Corps of Signals, making him eligible for a reduced price on purchasing his Together Housing home.

To prove that he qualifies, he needs to provide evidence of his tenancy in armed forces accommodation.

But when he contacted the Amey Occupancy Services - which runs service family accommodation - he was told that his accommodation records have been wiped.

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He said he has been told everyone’s records are deleted seven years after leaving the Army.

Mr Crapper, 69, left in December 1992, having served in Britain, Germany and Denmark.

He said he is concerned this issue will not just have affected him, but also countless other veterans across the country.

“The army has been very good to me,” he said. “It’s just this one instance.”

MP for Halifax Holly Lynch has contacted the Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace, calling on him to investigate the issue.

“Mr Crapper has served our country for over two decades, at great personal sacrifice,” she said.

“It is beyond frustrating that although he is eligible to benefit from Right to Buy, he is not able to buy his own home, due to absurd administrative barriers.

“I hope that the Ministry of Defence will be able to provide further assistance, for Mr Crapper, and for any other servicemen or women that might have been similarly affected.

“If the Armed Forces' covenant is to mean anything, they must find a solution to this problem.”