Housing shortage pushes Lambeth Council to relocate homeless families to Margate


The government is cutting 45% of Lambeth’s funding, putting their housing service under pressure.


By Seema Hakim

Lambeth council is considering moving homeless families to Margate following a shortage of temporary accommodation in the borough.

The government is cutting 45% of Lambeth’s funding which has put their housing service under great pressure.

The council has set up the voluntary scheme to give Lambeth families who need somewhere to live a choice to move temporarily to the seaside town in Kent.

“One of the options we have for meeting the challenge of helping those in need of temporary accommodation is to offer them the option of staying in homes outside of Lambeth, including a small number of properties in Margate,” said a spokesperson at Lambeth Council.

Lambeth was given a choice of 29 units of which they chose four, and consulted with officers in Thanet Council before leasing the properties.

Families who choose to move to Margate will still be under the responsibility of Lambeth Council and they have also assured that no vulnerable households will be relocated.

“It is important to be clear that this is being done on a voluntary basis,” the spokesperson said.

“If a resident declines the offer to move to Kent, they would not be forced to do so.

“Like many councils, we have a shortage of temporary accommodation and would welcome any funding support from central government to help us provide homes for those in need.”

The housing shortage in Lambeth also comes in light of the criticism Boris Johnson faced earlier this week.

The mayor was criticised for not putting targets for building new accommodation higher to ease the current housing crisis, as residents across London are struggling to keep up with soaring rents.

London’s Liberal Democrat leader, Caroline Pidgeon, told the Evening Standard, “The Mayor should spend less time boasting about achieving such modest housing targets and more time addressing the fact that the housing crisis is getting worse for hundreds of thousands of Londoners.

“The Mayor has the land, resources and financial freedom to deliver tens of thousands more affordable homes, if he had the political will.”

Photo courtesy of pam fray, with thanks.

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