Housing (London)

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 3:41 pm on 23rd April 2008.

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Photo of Grant Shapps Grant Shapps Shadow Minister (Communities and Local Government) (Housing and Planning), Co-Chair, Conservative Party 3:41 pm, 23rd April 2008

I congratulate Ms Buck on securing the debate. I know that the subject is a passion of hers.

This is a timely debate for me, because I have today released a report called "Crumbling Foundations", which looks specifically into affordable housing throughout the country and in London. A table on page 6—figure 3—amply demonstrates the point that the hon. Lady came here to raise today, which is that the number of people now on council waiting lists for housing is at an all-time record, including in London. Back in 1997, there were 181,080 on the council waiting lists; now there are 333,857 on the same lists. There is, by any extent, a crisis.

Mr. Dismore mentioned his constituency in great detail. I knew it well before he spoke and I now feel that I know it even better, including many of the estates. He knows the estates inside out, and he took us on a tour around them and explained many of the crippling housing problems. Jeremy Corbyn and other hon. Members clearly articulated the problem. In that regard, we are all in agreement; we all believe that there is a housing crisis.