Labour Halves Social HousingPosted: April 20, 2001
From Housing Today, 12/4/01:
Labour has halved social housing construction and doubled the rate of transfers since ousting the Conservatives in 1997. This finding emerged in a pre-election analysis of the three main parties’ housing plans for the Housing Quality Network. Consultant Tim Dwelly noted in his report that in 1997 Labour gave no pledge on investment in new homes and no housebuilding targets. “That is just as well, as the government has built half as many scial housing units as the last Conservative administration,” he wrote. Dwelly notes that stock transfer has more than doubled under New Labour.
“Labour did not pledge in 1997 to ‘halve housebuilding and double privatisation’ but that it what it has done,” he told network members. All three parties gave little space to housing in their last general election manifestos. Dwelly argues that it is only a slight exaggeration to say that the view of parties’ strategists is, “we are all home owners now, except you lot that don’t really vote. “He said it is “hard to identify any major battlegrounds on housing between Labour and the Tories.”
Note: the Housing Quality Network is entirely made up of professional housing managers – there are no tenants or community activists involved. This, for once, is an honest view from the inside of the housing world.