Wandsworth Gets Disappointing Share of Billion Pound Housing Fund

Allocation given by Mayor is one of the smallest for London's boroughs

Winstanley and York Road Estates
The Winstanley and York Road Estates are already being completely overhauled using existing borough budgets in conjunction with builder Taylor Wimpey

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced his ‘Building Council Homes for Londoners’ initiative in which over £1 billion is being given to local authorities across the capital to support the building of more homes that will be available at social rent levels. However, Wandsworth - the largest Inner London borough both geographically and by population - received a smaller tha expected grant.

Wandsworth has been awarded nearly £12.5 million which will allow an extra 174 homes to be built, a much smaller figure compared to, for example, Ealing Borough which is to receive £99,352,000 to provide an extra 1,138 homes. Sadiq Khan said, “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."

In response to the Mayor’s announcement that Wandsworth has been awarded £12,452,000 from the Mayor's initiative, local London Assembly Member, Leonie Cooper, said, “With too many local families priced out of the Wandsworth housing market and stuck in temporary accommodation, it has always been of the utmost priority that we get to grips with the housing crisis as a matter of urgency. The Government have sat on their hands when it comes to council homebuilding, which fell flat during the 1990s, and Wandsworth Council has tended to prioritise Shared Ownership, so this money is especially welcome".

Regeneration proposals for Roehampton’s Alton estate

Cllr Ravi Govindia, Leader of Wandsworth Council, appreciates the financial assistance but is disappointed that it was only 62.3% of the funds requested, “This money is part of a £4.8 billion Government grant to the Mayor to support new housing construction in London. We welcome this extra funding which will help us deliver our ambitious plans to kick start the regeneration of Roehampton’s Alton estate, but our total bid was for just under £20m so it is a little disappointing that we did not receive the full amount despite having a proven record of delivering affordable housing, which is better than most other London boroughs. We have already committed to build 1,000 homes on our own land of which 60 per cent will be for low cost rent and shared ownership and we are investing £80m from our own resources to fund these homes, but we could have achieved much more if the Mayor had provided us with all the funds we’d asked for.”

October 27, 2018