Mayor of London to fund 10,000 council homes
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has unveiled plans to get 10,000 new council homes underway in the capital by 2020.
In the first ever City Hall programme dedicated to supporting council housing, Khan will use funds from the £1.67bn he secured from the government in the Spring Statement to support London councils to increase the number of homes they build "dramatically".
In the 1970s, London councils were supported by central government and built more than 20,000 homes a year but the capital built just 2,100 council homes over the last seven years, including 300 completed last year.
Khan will offer councils the chance to bid for grant funding at a special rate, which City Hall said would allow them more easily to offer new homes based on social rent levels.
The first deals struck under Building Council Homes for Londoners include 525 new council homes in Waltham Forest with £26m of funding from City Hall over the next four years, while Newham and Lewisham have each committed to starting 1,000 new council homes by 2022.
Khan said: "I grew up on a council estate and I know first-hand the vital role social housing plays in London. Council homes for social rent bind our city together, and they have been built thanks to the ambition of London’s councils over many decades.
"I am proud to launch Building Council Homes for Londoners – the first ever City Hall programme dedicated to new council housing. I want to help councils get back to building homes for Londoners again, and I’m doing that with support from the £1.67bn fund I secured from government to help get 10,000 new homes underway over the next four years.
"I am offering councils expertise and resources from City Hall to scale up their homebuilding programmes, and I will help them to replace homes sold through Right to Buy. The government is failing to enable councils to replace the hundreds of thousands of council homes sold through Right to Buy, and so I will do all I can to help councils replace as many of them as possible."