A housing development partner building new homes for Labour-run Ealing Council which went bust at the end of last year has raised concerns from Ealing Liberal Democrats that the council is making poor decisions when selecting its partners.
The collapse of REAL Contracting, which was building new homes at High Lane in Hanwell and Green Man Estate in West Ealing, follows Henry Construction going bust in June 2023 and delaying eight sites across Ealing.
According to Ealing Liberal Democrats the demise of REAL Constructing will impact the building of 1000 new homes in Ealing and Hanwell.
In a statement, the LibDems said: “It shows appalling decision making by the Labour administration at Ealing Council in selection of their construction partners, resulting in delays across at least ten sites which will touch all parts of the borough. The administration is showing time and again that it is not thorough enough in assessing financial viability and due diligence of partners.
“Some of those new homes will be market sale homes which are being used to offset borrowing costs by the council to fund these building projects. This is during a period of high interest rates when the people of Ealing will be expected to shoulder the burden of repayment of this borrowing for longer due to these delays.”
Liberal Democrat Councillor Jon Ball, Opposition Spokesperson on Planning, Licensing and Housing added: “This latest company collapse shows that Labour has poor judgement in construction partner selection and the delays show they are not prioritising residents at a time of pressing need.”
Speaking to EALING.NEWS, a Ealing Council spokesperson said: “This has been a challenging period for contractors across the housing sector and the council carefully monitors the position of all its contractors. The council became aware of the issues relating to REAL as soon as they emerged in late 2023 and is currently working with partners to ensure the delivery of good quality homes on these sites can continue as soon as possible.”
They added: “The council is currently working on a delivery strategy for this and for the sites in administration, which will be brought forward in the coming months.”