Today's Evening Standard is pretty devastating stuff for H&F Council, returning as it does to the topic of what H&F Council really have up their sleeves for the borough's estates. If this write up is to be believed, and frankly even if only a small part of it is actually true, we now have a council whose real agenda for these estates has been laid bare. They themselves even refer to it as "social cleansing" apparently. I can't help thinking this is very reminiscent of Dame Shirley Porter in Westminster.
For a long time now the council has maintained that they really have no plans but their defence has appeared shifty, as for example they jetted off to meet property developers in Cannes, and recently even the Council Leader Stephen Greenhalgh was captured on film being forced by residents to admit that the official line - that there had been no discussions with developers about selling off the land - was false. Discussions he admitted had in fact taken place.
Thanks to Labour MP Andrew Slaughter's successful freedom of information request we now have a very revealing insight into the real thinking that has been going on at Hammersmith Town Hall, which until now has been kept secret from residents. These papers talk of the estates as "barracks for the poor", another declares that their policy should not be "about giving someone a £1 million home for life" and another recorded comment says simply that it is "hard to get rid of people".
I can't see how resignations are not in order now. Its either the dishonesty of denial which surely cannot now be maintained, or the sheer nastiness of the approach itself. Either way, its a pretty ugly side of our local authority. I wonder if our local press will report it.
FRIDAY UPDATE: The Guardian are reporting this story here
SUNDAY UPDATE: Surprise surprise the Ealing Gazette are not reporting this story.