Latest Public Sector News

19.11.19

Hammersmith and Fulham council to buy back Gibbs Green and West Kensington estates

Two estates that have been under threat of demolition since 2012 have been handed back to Hammersmith & Fulham council.

Gibbs Green and West Kensington estates were sold by the then Conservative-lead council in 2012 for £105 million to property investment company Capital and Counties (CapCo).

Since then, the estates have again been sold to Delancey who are now willing to sell Gibbs Green and West Kensington back to the now Labour controlled council for its original fee.

Sally Smith, chair of the West Kensington Tenants and Residents Association, said:

“It’s been 12 years of worry and while we would never have given up it’s hard to actually take in that this nightmare will soon be over.”

CapCo also acquired Earl’s Court Exhibition Building in the deal, which they demolished in order to build houses in the highly sought-after Earl’s Court area.

CapCo claimed that they would replace the 760 flats in Gibbs Green and West Kensington with almost 7,600 new houses, 1,500 of them being social and affordable rent housing.

The move comes after years of backlash from some 2,000 residents who refused to move into replacement housing that was offered to them by Capital and Counties due to fears of the new housing not being like-for-like.

Stephen Cowan, Hammersmith & Fulham council leader, said:

“For over a decade the residents of the West Kensington and Gibbs Green estates have suffered huge anxieties because the threat of demolition hung over their homes. On Friday we exchanged contracts with Delancey which is the first step to bringing about the safe return of all the land sold to Capco — which includes the two estates. In 10 working days’ time, when all parties complete, this saga will be brought to an end and our residents’ homes will be safe.”

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