Sian Berry (centre) during Central Hill estate visit
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has dealt a massive blow to Lambeth’s highly controversial plans to demolish six council estates – and given fresh hope to the people living on them.
Sian Berry, Green party member on London Assembly today asked the Mayor to put a hold on any new funding contracts during the ‘transition’ period, while the proposals for binding ballots are out for consultation until April 3rd and not yet in force.
The Mayor’s response: “I will be signing no new funding contracts until the consultation has ended and we’ve published the final guide.”
The latest move follows exclusive revelations* by News From Crystal Palace which showed Lambeth council’s claims that they did not need to ballot people living on five estates they want to demolish because they already have funding from the Greater London Authority to demolish them did not stand up to even MINOR scrutiny.
Investigations by News From Crystal Palace showed that the GLA DID give Lambeth council £10 million for three of the estates – Knight’s Walk, South Lambeth and Westbury estates – but that was to be spent on obtaining vacant possession on those sites.
And News From Crystal Palace found NO evidence (via Google) of ANY GLA funding involving Cressingham Gardens or Fenwick estates. (The sixth estate is Central Hill in Crystal Palace).
The Mayor’s announcement also casts huge doubts over the future of Lambeth council’s 100 per cent owned Homes for Lambeth company.
Sian Berry said: “If you live on an estate it makes sense that you get a say in what happens to your home.”
In independent research which she commissioned people living on estates who want a vote over the future of their homes have had their case backed by Londoners who said they support proposals for resident ballots.
In the survey, conducted by YouGov, 64 per cent of Londoners supported the Mayor’s new proposals for ballots to be a condition of his funding, with just 13 pc against letting residents decide in this way. 24 pc of respondents did not know or didn’t have a view.
Sian Berry says: “My research shows a majority of Londoners think this is fair. “Importantly, my sample was representative of all Londoners not just people who live on estates whose homes are directly threatened with plans for demolition
“Londoners living on estates have waited a long time to be allowed a say over their homes.
“I am glad that he has promised very clearly today to hold off on new deals and support residents’ rights to a ballot.”
The Mayor’s consultation ends on 3 April and the Mayor’s final funding guidance is expected to come in within months.
*EXCLUSIVE: LAMBETH COUNCIL’S ‘NO NEED FOR BALLOTS CLAIM’ EXPOSED AS BALDERDASH BY NEWS FROM CRYSTAL PALACE – Funding given by Greater London Authority for three estates was NOT for demolition – and GLA have not given any money for two other estates under threat – February 5, 2018