13,500 lost and counting: we can’t go on knocking down council homes

I’ve just published a report exposing the continued loss of council and social housing to demolition in London.

It shows just how many social homes we have already lost to demolitions in London, and how many more we are set to lose despite the current Mayor’s policy to give residents a ballot on the future of their homes.

Since 2003, we have already lost 6,748 council and housing association homes to the wrecking ball.

After I led a long campaign alongside residents of council estates up and down London, the Mayor committed to giving estate residents a vote on whether or not demolitions go ahead. But too many of the lost homes in the pipeline are on estates given exemptions at the last minute before the policy started.

If current plans go ahead, we will lose another 6,791 homes in the years to come, and a total that now exceeds 13,500.

Read the full report here

Total council homes lost to demolition in London since 2003

London simply cannot afford to lose this many homes through demolition.

Waiting lists of Londoners in urgent need of housing continue to grow and people are more squeezed than ever by the housing crisis. Demolishing estates in this way not only reduces the amount of housing for families in need, it also breaks up communities at the heart of life in the city.

The Mayor’s decision to sign off on dozens of redevelopment schemes in 2018, allowing them to dodge incoming rules for resident ballots, has prolonged the damage to our city. I have found that the new ballot policy is not yet making a significant impact on schemes that have reached the planning stage as a result.

And now estates are under even more threat from the Government’s proposed new national planning rules. These would force councils to define whole areas for rapid or automatic planning approval and do not give a single mention to the rights of people already living in these areas to have a say.

When I’m Mayor residents will have the power they need to take the lead on any plans for their estates, and the final say they need. I’ll keep my promises.