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Emma Dent Coad: ‘Grenfell changed everything forever’


'Let’s stop using that horrible word "regeneration", which for social tenants means demolition of their homes and neighbourhoods, and wholesale decanting or forced removal to cheaper areas.' Indeed, but why is the Labour MP for Kensington telling the Architects' Journal, when she has direct access to Jeremy Corbyn, John Healey, Sadiq Khan and presumably the leaders of the Labour councils implementing London's estate regeneration programme such as Lib Peck in Lambeth, Philip Glanville in Hackney, Peter John in Southwark, Damien Egan in Lewisham and John Biggs in Tower Hamlets - to name only the most demolition-happy councils? Last August ASH identified 237 London estates that have recently undergone, are currently undergoing or are threatened with regeneration, privatisation or demolition and redevelopment with the resulting loss of homes for social rent. 150 of these were in Labour-run boroughs. Given the secrecy with which councils and housing associations conceal their schemes, there will undoubtedly be many more we haven't identified. Most of them are replicating the privatised management structures, unaccountability to residents and building regulations uncompliant maintenance and services that were in place at Grenfell. Many of them are being supported by funds from London's Labour Mayor. All of them are being carried out in accordance with GLA guidance and Labour housing policy. If Emma Dent Coad and the other politicians in the Labour Party that have tried to blame this disaster on the Conservative government's austerity fiscal policies (although without ever explaining how this caused the fire) wish to stop the estate regeneration programme on which Labour's housing policies are founded and which is driving London's housing crisis, she should look closer to home. She won't, because estate regeneration is a cross-party programme to which all three political parties in power in London's local authorities have subscribed. Labour's opportunism in turning the death of 72 residents to their own party-political ends at the expense of the truth of what killed them will one day stand high in the list of its betrayals of the people who, against all the evidence to the contrary, continue to believe the Labour Party stands 'for the many, not the few'. Simon Elmer Architects for Social Housing

Posted date

17 June, 2018

Posted time

9:26 pm