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Tower Hamlets launches new housing report showing progress made over the last 18 months


The housing crisis is the greatest challenge facing London today and remains a top concern for our residents and a top priority for Tower Hamlets Council to tackle.

With one of the fastest growing boroughs in London, having an affordable, secure home is difficult for many people due to rising private rents and a lack of genuinely affordable homes.

The launch of the new housing report reveals the extensive work carried out across the borough to tackle this crisis, deliver new homes, and support residents. It shows that Tower Hamlets Council has delivered the following over the last 18 months:

  • 827 new homes – completed and occupied. These are a combination of new build and purchases
  • 224 new build homes are on site and under construction
  • 184 new build homes awaiting contractor appointment, finances approved and planning secured

Additionally, work has commenced on the next phase of new council homes, including:

  • 42 homes with planning permission secured and funding being finalised.
  • 451 mainly new build homes have been allocated funding and are moving towards planning permission
  • 318 further homes are in the pipeline or in appraisal

In total, this means the council is delivering and has delivered 2,046 additional homes.

Additional to this, registered housing providers have also delivered over 5,900 new affordable homes in the borough from 2015/16 to December 2021.

John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets, said: “One of the most important things we’re doing as a council is to tackle the housing crisis by delivering new homes. Looking at these figures, I’m delighted by what we have managed to achieve over the last 18 months, outdoing our original housing pledge of 2,000 new council homes. 

“This is in addition to thousands more affordable homes being delivered by housing partners in the borough. Whether it’s giving a child their own room or providing an accessible flat for someone with a disability, each home has been truly transformative and we will continue to assist our residents wherever possible to provide suitable housing.” 

The housing report also showed the council’s commitment to assisting residents in finding more affordable housing options through the Intermediate Housing Register which launched in October. This continues to support people on low to average incomes find a secure home and help tackle the housing waiting list. 

Supporting private renters is also a major focus for Tower Hamlets Council, and the launch of the private renters’ charter has allowed the council to take more action against rogue landlords through licensing and enforcement to protect our residents. 

Tower Hamlets has also secured the most funding in the country as part of the New Home Bonus after being allocated £16,262,773 for delivering on the commitment to create much needed affordable homes for residents. The New Homes Bonus is a grant paid by central government to local councils to reflect and incentivise housing growth in these areas.                                                                                      

The report also showed further key outcomes including: 

  • The successful securement of £32m in grant funding from the Mayor of London’s Affordable Housing Programme to fund an additional 194 new homes for social rent in the borough
  • The introduction of a local lettings plan where 25% of completed homes can be let to households on the Common Housing Register who already live on the estates where the new homes are built
  • The approval of the ‘Affordable Self-Build’ Programme with the first 2 of 4 sites having been awarded to the community self-build groups. 

Cllr Danny Hassell, Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “I am thrilled by the launch of our housing report which details what we have managed to achieve over the last 18 months. 

“We want to continue to use every opportunity across Tower Hamlets to build homes and tackle the housing shortage, make best use of our land and assist our residents in finding appropriate housing.”

Delivery Report - Housing and Homes

Appendix 1 for Delivery Report - Housing and Homes

Posted on Thursday 10th February 2022