Prince William expresses concern at poor state of privately rented homes during Blackpool visit

Prince William has expressed his concern at the poor state of some privately rented homes and the landlords who take the rent but fail to maintain their properties.

He did it on a visit to Blackpool, where both William and Kate spent a lot of time focusing on the work to regenerate the Lancashire seaside resort.

While Blackpool is known for its tower and its lights along the seafront, the town suffers on almost every measure of employment, housing, health and life chances when compared to most other parts of the country.

The couple were shown a dilapidated house - which until recently had a family living inside.

The kitchen area of the neglected house Prince William and Kate were shown during their Blackpool visit. Credit: ITV News

Rain was leaking through the windows, there were holes in the ceiling and the floor had to be temporarily supported to make sure William and Kate did not fall through it.

Blackpool Council has recently bought the house from the previous owners and now intends to renovate it and let it to new tenants.

It’s a particular problem in the town, where former B&Bs are now owned and let as accommodation by private landlords.

Those who let their houses fall into disrepair are often called "slum landlords".

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were also shown a property across the street which has been renovated by the local authority.

William spoke about the issue when he met the town’s leaders at the famous Blackpool Tower.

"There is a sadder side to Blackpool", William said, before adding: "And we shouldn’t skirt around these issues."

William and Kate during a visit to Blackpool Tower. Credit: PA Wire

68% of voters here chose to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum which suggests it’s one of the areas where people felt they had been left behind.

It means William, who is second in line to the throne, has yet again come as close as he constitutionally can to entering the political debate.

The Royal Family appears to have decided to become more vocal in recent weeks on issues from while it would normally run a mile.

It also suggests they want to provide some leadership that the country is not getting from its politicians as they continue to argue over the exact terms of the UK’s departure from the EU.

Kate joked 'Is the weather always like this?' while greeting well-wishers. Credit: PA

So far this year, William has met unions and bosses in Dundee over his concern for hundreds of workers being made redundant at a tyre factory and he made remarks in Belfast urging everyone - including politicians at Westminster and Stormont - to put their differences aside and work together.

The Queen also expressed her concern recently about the divisive national debate over Brexit.

After giving up his job as an air ambulance pilot in 2017 to take on more duties on behalf of the Queen, Prince William is beginning to shape the role he wants for himself.

The next Prince of Wales, as William will become, will be different to the current Prince of Wales - but it seems William, just like his father Prince Charles, doesn’t intend to be a silent one.