Tower Hamlets’ ground-floor leasehold lift charges are grounded

FAMILIES in ground-floor flats got a breather last night when breaks were put on new charges for repairs to lifts and entry-phones they don’t use.

Plans to bring in the fees for thousands of leaseholders in council blocks in London’s East End have been put on the back burner by Tower Hamlets.

It follows a deputation led by Cllr Marc Francis who persuaded the authority’s scrutiny committee to defer the planned charges after objections from Tower Hamlets Leaseholders Association.

Mayor Lutfur Rahman has now been asked to think again.

“I hope he’ll hold off these charges for services these families don’t use,” Cllr Francis told the East London Advertiser.

“These leaseholders aren’t rich—many are pensioners who bought their flats in the 1980s for security in their old age.”

Objectors complained there had been no proper consultation with the estimated 2,000 families leasing ground-floor flats on council estates.

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The leaseholders association’s chairman John Bloxham said: “The mayor could still charge leaseholders—but referring the decision back to him is a positive step that gives him time to think again.”

Thousands more who live in former council estates could also be hit if their social landlords took up the mayor’s proposals.