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Khan settles on cash for 11,000 council homes

Words: Laura Edgar
Sadiq Khan / Steve Punter

Plans worth more than £1 billion with 26 London boroughs have been agreed on, so that more than 11,000 new councils homes can be built in London over the next four years.

The move forms part of the Mayor of London’s ‘Building Council Homes for Londoners’ programme.

Barking and Dagenham565£25,338,000
City of London156£14,880,000
Hammersmith and Fulham251£15,308,000
Kensington and Chelsea336£33,600,000
Kingston upon Thames713£67,844,000
Redbridge400funding from Right to Buy receipts
Tower Hamlets675£13,000,000
Waltham Forest293£25,518,000

Sadiq Khan launched it in May, setting a target of delivering 10,000 new homes. Interest from councils will see 11,154 new councils homes at social rent levels built and 3,570 other homes built, including at London Living Rent levels.

The funding comes from the £1.67 billion Khan secured from the government in the 2018 Spring Statement. He said he would also be offering extra support to councils, including a way to help them reinvest receipts from homes sold under the Right to Buy scheme.

The Greater London Authority (GLA) estimates that the funding will see councils build five times as many homes as were built over the previous four years.

Khan said council housing is the most important part of the solution to addressing London's housing crisis. He added that the recent lifting of the borrowing cap will not be enough alone, and is just the first step of reform.

“London’s housing crisis is hugely complex and has been decades in the making. There is no simple fix – but council housing is the most important part of the solution. Londoners need more council homes that they can genuinely afford, and local authorities have a fundamental role to play in getting London building the homes we need for the future.

“We need at least four times the amount of money we currently get from government for new social and affordable homes, and we need far greater powers to step in and buy land for new council housing. The scale of what I have announced shows the ambition is there in London to build a new generation of council homes – ministers now urgently need to step up and go the distance too.”

Newham Council bid for £107 million to build more than 1,000 councils homes across 40 sites by 2022. The homes will be available at London Affordable Rent. The borough's mayor, Rokhsana Fiaz, said: “Newham residents are at the forefront of the housing crisis. Too many families are desperately in need of a sustainable home they can genuinely afford. We have over 27,000 households on our housing waiting list and more than 4,800 households in temporary accommodation. This is why I have committed to build over 1,000 new council homes at social rent levels over the next four years. Only through a massive council housebuilding programme can we begin to address the scale of this challenge.”

Image credit | Steve Punter