Property’s big guns to get loaded in London

The annual London Real Estate Forum kicks off on June 12 with champagne, canapés and even a genteel game of cricket. Since 2013 the LREF has helped developers and their development ‘partners’ – London’s locally elected council leaders – to mushroom gentrification across London. Gentrification has driven up property prices and rents to unaffordable levels and has led to a net loss of council homes through estate demolition. This intensifies London’s chronic shortage of genuinely affordable homes and causes the ‘social cleansing’ of Londoners on average and lower incomes from traditionally working class neighbourhoods. The LREF boasts it offers ‘property decision makers’ a chance for ‘relaxed conversation’. However, council estate resident campaigners, trying to save their homes from demolition, decry LREF as an event where locally elected politicians willingly subvert local democracy  – and publicly owned land and assets – to the interests of corporate developer tyrannies. As for the cricket, players pay £300 each to play in a charity match for young homeless people. Paul Coleman reports.

Read more