More than 350 children are homeless in the North East, according to new figures by Shelter

Newcastle has the highest number of homeless people in the region. Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees

More than 1,000 people - including more than 350 children - are homeless in the North East.

Figures released by the charity Shelter show there are 1,250 people in the North East are currently homeless.

These figures include 50 people who are sleeping rough, and 1,100 living in temporary accommodation.

Newcastle has the highest number of homeless people in the region with an estimated 232 people, followed by 229 people in Gateshead and 226 in County Durham.

Other figures show that 122 people are homeless in North Tyneside, 83 in Sunderland, 68 in Northumberland and 33 in South Tyneside.

The information was released following Freedom of Information requests.

Tracy Guy, Newcastle service lead at Shelter, said: "The new year should be a time of hope, but this isn't the case for the 1,250 homeless people in the North East who are facing a truly bleak 2023.

"A cold doorway or a grotty hostel room is not a home, but this is reality for too many people today.

"Our frontline advisers are working tirelessly to help people who are desperate to escape homelessness - from the parents doing all they can to provide some shred of a normal family life while stuck in an emergency B&B, to the person terrified of another night sleeping rough."   

Across England, the number of people living in temporary accommodation has risen by 74% in the last 10 years. Shelter has said that this is driven by a shortage of social homes, and unstable private renting and the cost of living crisis.

More than two-thirds of families (68%) living in temporary accommodation in England have been there for over a year.

Shelter said it had carried out the largest survey of homeless households living in temporary accommodation.

It found that almost two-thirds of people (63%) who responded said that living in temporary accommodation has had a negative impact on their mental health.

Just over half (51%) said it has had a negative impact on their physical health, and two in five people (39%) said that living in temporary accommodation has made it harder to access healthcare appointments.

An average of 1000 calls per day from people across England are made to the Shelter's emergency helpline, with almost eight in ten homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

A Government spokeswoman said: “Councils have a duty to ensure no family is left without a roof over their heads. That is why we’ve given them £366 million this year to help prevent evictions, support to pay deposits and provide temporary housing.

“Temporary accommodation is always a last resort. Over half a million households have been prevented from becoming homeless since 2018 through the Homelessness Reduction Act.

“We are also providing significant support to help people through these tough times by holding down energy bills and delivering up to £1,350 in direct cash payments to millions of vulnerable households.”

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