It is being reported that the Environment Agency is putting on hold its plan to sell off 10 houses and rent out 12 others. This follows a wave of protests and a petition on the 10 Downing Street website.
After a meeting with Environment Minister Phil Woolas and MPs Martin Salter and Theresa May, the EA has agreed to put the proposals on hold until it has completed "a full review of waterways staff roles and responsibilities, and terms and conditions".
In a statement, EA said that no action will be taken to sell or rent lock houses until negotiations on the full review are completed. It was anticipated that this will take six months but their guarantee would continue until all negotiations are completed or 1st January 2009, whichever is later.
EA also said that any future review of the lock keepers' houses would involve the MPs as well as lock keepers' representatives.