Virtually all the council housing in Swindon – 10,300 flats and houses – meets the nationally-mandated 'decent homes standard'.

Councillors will be told this week that almost 99 per cent of the borough’s housing stock is up to the benchmark set by Homes England. The remaining 1.12 per cent doesn’t meet it only because the tenant would prefer not to have the necessary work done.

A report on the authority’s housing performance to the adults health, care and housing overview and scrutiny committee says: “At April 1, 98.88 percent of the council’s housing stock complied to this standard.This is an excellent result.

"The reason for a small number of homes not meeting the standard is down to tenant preferences to not have the work completed, for example not wishing to have a central heating system.

“Where this occurs the council upgrades the property once it becomes void, 1990 properties benefitted from decent homes standard work during 2018/19.”

The number of empty council homes at April 1 this year was 99, down from a high of more than 230 in February 2018.

Seventy homes were being repaired and 29 were in the process of being re-let.