A string of houses at a Lake District honeypot site could be acquired by a housing association.

South Lakes Housing is seeking to take over six properties at Railway Cottages overlooking the route of the Lakeside and Haverthwaite railway.

The six properties – part of 12 – already have long-term tenants aged between 65 and 80.

The plan would involve taking the tenants on from their current owner and continuing to offer them a home on a low-cost tenanted basis.

Substantial improvement works are needed to bring the properties up to a modern standard, according to a report to South Lakeland District Council next week.

South Lakes Housing is seeking a £282,000 grant from SLDC’s affordable housing fund as part of the acquisition.

The £6 million pot was set up to encourage housing associations to come forward with schemes to provide more low-cost affordable housing.

As many as 45 people are on SLDC’s housing register, waiting for social housing in the Newby Bridge area, which includes places such as Backbarrow, Cark, Haverthwaite and Hawkshead.

Papers to go before SLDC’s cabinet said the move would safeguard existing tenants, secure the refurbishment of the properties and ensure the properties were retained for affordable housing use.

Otherwise, there is a risk the occupants could be made homeless if the properties were ever sold on, said a report to SLDC’s cabinet which meets next week to discuss the plans.

Talks with the tenants have shown that they are ‘happy’ with the proposed new arrangement, said a report by Julie Jackson, the council’s principal housing strategy officer.

The council’s cabinet, led by council leader Giles Archibald, has been recommended to agree to the funding application.