WYRE Forest tenants are paying more to keep a roof over their heads than before the coronavirus pandemic.

Housing charity Shelter said thousands of people are "battling to stay in their homes and face the threat of homelessness" as they attempt to keep up with rents rocketing to record levels.

Office for National Statistics figures show the median rent per property paid by tenants across 920 homes in Wyre Forest in the year to March was £650.

This is a measure across all types of properties, from shared rooms to one-bed apartments to four-bed homes, so prices vary widely.

It was up by 8.3 per cent from £600 the year before.

In the year to March 2020, before the pandemic, tenants paid an average of £575.

Further ONS figures show rents in England increased by 4.9 per cent in the 12 months to May – up from 4.7 per cent in the 12 months to April.