Housing and the Olympic legacy featured large last night at People’s Question Time in Newham’s Old Town Hall in Stratford. Boris made claims on the importance of social rented housing to Londoners, when the truth is he’s giving it no grant and he’s trying to block boroughs through the planning system from delivering it (not just boroughs like Newham, but even his own Tory boroughs like Kensington and Chelsea).
Let’s take the Olympic legacy. Only just over eight per cent of homes in the Athlete’s Village will be social rent. 10 per cent of all future neighbourhoods in the Olympic Park will be available at affordable rent. The greatest need in London is decent housing for families on low income. In Newham, 38,000 households of mainly families are on such low incomes that they have to claim housing benefit – where does Boris think they’re going to live?