A mum who lived in temporary accommodation with her young daughter has said a new affordable housing scheme has "transformed my family’s future".

Sophie Paul said moving into a new home of their own had "changed everything" after the massive instability of temporary housing affected her daughter’s development.

She said the difference in her three-year-old daughter Lilly-Rose had been "amazing".

The youngster has some additional needs and before moving to their new home in Morris Street, Radcliffe, had struggled to be around strangers and with her language development.

Speaking at the launch of the Morris Street development, built by social housing provider Irwell Valley Homes, Sophie hailed the positive impact of truly affordable housing and said more such home should be made available.

She said: “Since we moved here Lilly-Rose has flourished. She’s come on so much in so many ways, her confidence, her language.

Everything is different now, our lives have changed so much.”

Sophie and Lilly-Rose moved into one of the affordable rent homes in March, soon after they were completed.

The development is made up of 16 two and three-bedroom homes let at 80 per cent of the market rate for the area, as well as a further nine offered through shared ownership.

Sophie Paul and Lilly-Rose with the keys to their new home

Sophie Paul and Lilly-Rose with the keys to their new home

The new homes, which make up a £4.3m scheme with £1.1m provided by Homes England, were launched by Irwell Valley Homes in their 50th birthday year.

The organisation started out with just nine homes in Salford in May 1973 and now serves more than 20,000 customers across 7,800 homes in Greater Manchester, including nearly 1,100 homes in Bury.

Sophie said: “I feel so lucky to have been offered one of these homes.

“We had to go into temporary accommodation when my relationship with Lilly-Rose’s dad ended and during those eight months we had to move twice. It was a really difficult time.

“When I found out we were being offered a brand-new home, I couldn’t believe it – I was over the moon. Having the stability and the security that this place offers us at a rent I can afford is amazing and gives me so much peace of mind.

“The area is great, Lilly-Rose loves the park up the road and it’s in the catchment area for a school I like.

"The future seems so much brighter now we’re here.”

Sophie and Lilly-Rose joined other guests including Cllr Clare Cummins, cabinet member for housing services at the council, local ward Cllr Mary Walsh, Jackie Summerscales, unit manager for housing strategy, policy and performance at the council, and representatives from building contractor Watson Homes for the official opening of the scheme.

Guests enjoyed a tour of the homes, which have green features including air source heat pumps, mechanical ventilation, solar panels and electric vehicle charging points.

Sasha Deepwell, chief executive of Irwell Valley Homes, said: “It was fantastic to meet Sophie and Lilly-Rose at the launch of our Morris Street development and hear from them first-hand the difference that a safe, affordable and quality home is making to their lives.

“Some 50 years on from when we launched, this remains our core purpose – to enable people to live well in their homes and communities."

Guests at the launch of Morris Street, Bury, enjoy a birthday cake celebrating 50 years of Irwell Valley Homes

Guests at the launch of Morris Street, Bury, enjoy a birthday cake celebrating 50 years of Irwell Valley Homes

Cllr Clare Cummins said: “I am delighted to see these new homes completed.

“Not only does this new development contribute towards the council’s ambition to build more affordable housing, but these high-quality energy efficient homes – which are all-electric, EPC A-rated and have air source heat pumps – will reduce fuel bills and help our efforts to protect the environment.”