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Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Buildings for the future

Recently a wag at the ConLib Government announced a wheeze whereby council housing tenancies would have a time limit on them, of "say 5 or 10 years". After such a period your circumstances would be reviewed and if you were in the "fortunate" position at this date to no longer qualify for social housing, then you would receive an eviction notice and told to bugger off the private sector. Englishmans home, and all that.

Hornet assumes this "idea" was dreampt up to help address the chronic problem of over/under crowding in the social housing spheres.

Commendable problem to address, crass response. This demonstrates a lack of understanding of the real issues, facing real people; and illustrates how the person(s) developing this "idea" has absolutely no idea of what its like to be housed in, or aspire to even have the offer of a home of their own unaffordable by any other route.

Not everyone in this world has holiday homes abroad or are financially well off enough to buy their own home, or rent in the private sector. Some may choose not to purchase, others because of their circumstances, bad credit, or bankruptcy, may not be able to be offered a mortgage.

It is sheer fantasy to suppose it is any kind of solution to the housing crisis to evict people from their home if they get a decent job, or if they are a lone parent who meets and chooses to live together with someone they love.

This "idea" will simply make a chronic situation even worse. Householders granted a tenancy on the basis they have a low income, will make absolutely no attempt to gain employment or better their circumstances because they are all too aware to do so will mean eviction in a number of years time. Social housing estates in the inner cities will become true sink-estates devoid of inspiration and hope, with graffiti and litter and run down facilities.

The single parent of three living in the three bedroom house somewhere out in the countryside when the kids have grown up and left home, either to start their own lives or at university, will face in x number of years the notice to quit as she no longer qualifies for the council house. Instead, she qualifies for a one bed flat, but they don't have any in Sleepytown where s/he has lived for the past 30 years.S/he has to move to one of the sink estates in the city a few hundred miles from where s/he lives where the nearest one bed place is available.

Hornet can also understand why someone having to cope with sky high rents and a bad landlord in the private rented sector might wonder what all the fuss is about and feel that council tenants have it easy. This is what happens when you have a residual, heavily means-tested public service only for the poorest - it is easy to divide people who need the service against each other and cut it.

Hornet wonders how many elected councillors have second, third or even more homes that they rent out... this space!


  1. You might be interested in what's going on in the Far and Frozen North, at the Wornington Green estate. The go ahead for the destruction of (howlingly badly managed) homes was the vote of one counsellor at 1am in the morning.

    Speaking as a social tenant, I'm grateful for your analysis. Eny fule nos this, but the Great and Good obviously don't damn their eyes.

    Keep up the good work


  2. Thanks for that, please do send me an email with any info you have. my email is

    Dont worry your anonymity is guaranteed.


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