London Forum Updates
£50m rent rise as social housing converted
Posted on: 3 April 2015 at 13:31:15
The Guardian reports that London housing associations have responded to shortfall in government funding by recategorising tenancies so they can set rents at the highest possible level. As a result, London’s poorest households have been hit by a £50m rent rise.
The report states "Social rents are typically half market rate, while so-called affordable tariffs are up to 80% of private rents, leading to complaints that the definition of affordable is Orwellian.
Over half of the housing associations set the converted rents higher than 70% of market rate in the last recorded period in the City Hall figures. Others, determined to keep housing genuinely affordable, have charged much lower rents."
At 24Dash.com there is an analysis of the rents charged by housing providers. The range is from twenty of them charging from 70% up to 80% of the market rent down to 39% at Family Mosaic whose chief executive Brendan Sarsfield, said: "At Family Mosaic our goal is to help those in greatest need and, once they are our tenants, to help them into work, and keep working, in what is often a low wage economy.This makes rent levels very important to us. We have balanced this by being more efficient and making money from selling homes (for which we get criticised)."
Consultation on services of Historic England
Posted on: 2 April 2015 at 16:49:41
Historic England has just launched a consultation on Enhanced Advisory Services. The consultation is in the form of a survey monkey questionnaire. The questions for your reference are here.
The services are intended to give greater certainty to complex or time sensitive development projects and they cover:-
- Fast-track Listing
- Listing enhancement
- Extended pre-application advice
- Screening service
The details and a link to the consultation are here.
Govt. response to Select Committee on community rights
Posted on: 1 April 2015 at 19:22:42
The Select Committee investigating the Government's Community Rights programme has received a response from Government as here.
Their recommendations 13 and 15 were important and Government action on them after the elections will be monitored.
With so much out-sourcing of services by local authorities, community engagement in the contract terms and selection (13) is important.
Investment "to enable effective community group member organisations to support local people" (15) is necessary. London's civic and community groups may have views on how useful has been the support mentioned in the paragraphs 42 and 43. Comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
Thames Garden Bridge Judicial Review
Posted on: 31 March 2015 at 15:47:34
There has been criticism of the cost, location, usage and impact of the Garden Bridge across the Thames. A Judicial Review of the planning permission for it has been granted.
The case against the bridge is here.
Please consider the points made in it and, if you support the arguments, you may wish to contribute to the costs of the action, as indicated, and to draw other people's attention to the web site at http://tcos.org.uk/ and a blog on the subject which can be seen at tcoslondon.tumblr.com
Publications for attention of the incoming Government
Posted on: 31 March 2015 at 12:05:42
At this time in the run-up to a General Election, various organisations will publish their recommendations for the future to try to influence the next Government's policies.
One is a paper here by the thinktank Institute for Public Policy Research, with a section on 'City villages: More homes, better communities' by Andrew Adonis, a former Labour cabinet minister.
It has received criticism here for the basis on which its points are made by Duncan Bowie, Senior Lecturer in Spatial Planning at University of Westminster.
There is also a pre-election statement here by the Highbury Group on Housing Delivery with policies on housing supply for the next Government.
Heritage Alliance update on the Budget and lobbying MPs
Posted on: 30 March 2015 at 21:26:47
A very comprehensive and useful update has been issued by Heritage Alliance and is here.
Data on jobs in London by sector and sub-sectors
Posted on: 29 March 2015 at 18:33:35
The GLA Intelligence Unit has published details on the types and numbers of jobs in London.
Comment on HS2 in London
Posted on: 29 March 2015 at 14:06:27
Andrew Bosi for London Forum has published comments on the 'Developing UK Rail' conference held on 4th March 2015.
London Forum opposes using Euston as the terminal for HS2 - see here.
New Era for England's Heritage
Posted on: 28 March 2015 at 14:19:53
On 1 April 2015, English Heritage will separate to become two organisations:Historic England, a public body to champion and protect England’s historic environment, everything from prehistoric remains to post-war office buildings, and The English Heritage Trust, a new independent charity retaining the name English Heritage, to look after – on behalf of the nation – the National Heritage Collection of more than 400 historic sites across England including Stonehenge, Dover Castle and some of the best preserved parts of Hadrian’s Wall. See more here.
Latest London Datastore of statistics and information
Posted on: 28 March 2015 at 10:21:07
The GLA's Datastore of facts and figures about London is available here.
The Tweets on the right hand side of the first web page point to recent analysis and reports.