Last year we discovered that Barnet Council had bought 28 city properties, in order to move their own homeless families in to, despite our own city facing a housing crisis forcing local people to wait more than a year for a home.
At the time, we also discovered that the Conservative controlled City Council, had no idea that this had happened!
However, I was intrigued why the Tories at the Town Hall, with their history and apparent policy of short-term capital gain, had decided not to sell the land, after they themselves previously claimed the land was valued at £750,000?
Tory Councillor Irene Walsh advised that she was not aware of the particular reason behind the 12 year lease period, but would provide a further response to me following clarification. This of course never transpired.
Since the meeting, I’ve discovered that one of the main reasons for not selling the land, according to the City Council was “due to the significant social return of £490,000 that the Green Backyard have been able to demonstrate from their activities with the local community during 2015/2016“, strange that Cllr Walsh did not know this, as it clearly states this in the decision notice signed by her ….. and why was such information ignored or not looked into in previous years?
And why 12 years, and not a 13 or 10 year lease??
I’d love to know your thoughts! Please feel free to post them below!