TEACHERS in a region of Berkshire are being given a leg up the ladder from an new local authority housing scheme.

Wokingham District Council started construction on 22 eco-friendly flats at St Crispin's School in Wokingham in July last year,Tenants may move in as soon as April, paying rents some 20 per cent to 25 per cent below market rate.

The flats have a range of eco-friendly features and are expected to be the first in the area to achieve an Excellent EcoHomes rating.

Working together with Home Group and Denne Construction, this pilot project could mean Wokingham District Council is one of the first in the country to build much-needed key worker accommodation on surplus school land.

Features to the eco-flats include solar thermal panels to generate hot water, timber frame construction and windows, water butts to harvest excess drain and rain water, and permeable surfaces which allow rainwater to drain back into the aquifers.

Plus locally-sourced labour and materials were used to cut down on fuel consumption.