The first new social housing built by Powys County Council for 40 years will be constructed in Newtown after a plan to build 26 flats on Back Lane was approved by the county council.

The scheme also represent the first new social housing built in the area following the abolition of the "right to buy" act in Wales, where social housing tenants were entitled to buy their properties at a price lower than the full market value.

The planning applications for the one-bedroom flats on land adjacent to Newtown Bowling Club at Back Lane was approved by Powys County Council’s Planning Committee earlier this month, and the council say the development will help it meet its target of building at least 250 affordable homes in the county over the next five years.

Cllr James Evans, Cabinet Member for Housing, said he was excited by the development.

"I’m delighted that we have received planning permission. [The] decision means that the council will now be building new social housing for the first time in 40 years," he said.

"It also means that we will start to deliver on our promise to develop 250 additional homes over the next five years that meet the needs of the local communities across Powys. This development is just the first of many housing developments that we are planning across the county.

"The design takes into account our Wood Encouragement Policy, which will see the timber used for both the primary structure and external materials including windows and doors.

"This exciting development is one that will meet the needs of the local community.”

A decision by Welsh Government earlier this year to encourage the development of new housing stock saw the Right to Buy and Right to Acquire terminated in Wales for the first time since it was introduced by the UK government in 1980. Scotland abolished Right to Buy in 2016.

With planning permission now granted, further work to finalise the tender documents will be completed in the next few weeks. The tender process will be completed during October/November with a target date to start on site early next year and the project will take 18 months to complete.