Homeless London families being relocated in Kent

PUBLISHED: 09:29 14 November 2012

The leader of Kent County Council has lobbied the government over reports of London councils buying cheaper property in the county to house soon-to-be displaced families.

It was revealed last week that local authorities in the capital have bought rental properties in Kent, including Gravesend and Dartford, to cope with the consequences of the housing benefit cap next April.

It is thought many families will be forced to leave inner London as new rates of housing benefit will not be high enough to cover rents.

KCC leader Paul Carter said: “Any significant migration out of London could add enormous pressure to county and district council services such as education, children’s services, housing and so on.

“It could easily add to the concentration of poor households in some areas of Kent where unemployment is high.”

KCC is working with district and borough councils to try to track the movement of people into the county once the benefit cap is in place.

Gravesham council leader John Burden said his authority is monitoring the issue. “It is not fair or reasonable. We want residents of Gravesham to come first,” he said.

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