Southwark Council Home Building Grinds to a Halt, Southwark Liberal Democrats Reveal

30 May 2024
Housebuilding hoardings

Internal queries from the Southwark Liberal Democrats have revealed that the number of council homes started in 2023/2024 was just 28, down 96% from 2022/2023.

Compounding the issue is that fewer than half of the council homes started since 2017/2018 have been completed by last year at just 45%, raising questions about the Labour administration’s attempts to boast about its record using starts data.  

This precipitous drop comes as the housing crisis reaches new highs. In Southwark 17,700 households are on the housing waiting list, and the Trust for London has rung alarm bells about poorer families leaving London at unprecedented rates. 

Last year, the council announced it would pause some of its new building schemes in an effort to curb a £13.8 million deficit, and a development in Borough that would have built 25 new council homes was scrapped after some existing properties had already been demolished.  

Commenting, Deputy Leader of the Southwark Liberal Democrats Cllr Rachel Bentley said:  

“These figures show that the boasting we hear from Labour is just smoke and mirrors.  

People are stuck between the twin nightmares of the Conservatives crashing the economy and the mismanagement of local housebuilding by Labour.   

The housing crisis has left our community at breaking point, and in desperate need of more social homes. It’s no wonder people feel so abandoned.” 

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