Poor social housing has been a problem for decades

Poor social housing conditions have been a problem for 30 or 40 years and the Government, together with social landlords, face an uphill battle to solve the issue according to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

During an interview with ITV News, the Archbishop said the poor housing conditions faced by some social housing tenants (and highlighted for much of the previous year by the broadcaster) were “tragically familiar”.

The Archbishop said:

“It’s not just a Government issue, it needs housing associations, national government, local government, landowners. We need a revolution in social housing and affordable housing to sort it.”

When asked what hope he has that all of the various bodies will act, he said it is a “considerable uphill struggle” and that the problem could take 10 years to solve.

“This has been going on for 30 or 40 years,” he added.

He then said:

“We need people who say, ‘In politics, my life’s ambition is to deal with that – I want to be the person who goes down in the history books as having made a difference on this in my local government or at national level’.

“We need landlords who say, ‘I’m not happy with building another estate of unaffordable houses…’ “We need to build communities, not just houses. And that’s what will change things most fundamentally.”

While the Archbishop said it would take at least 10 years to solve the problem, he said “acute issues”, such as mould growing across ceilings in tenants’ homes, could be solved in as little time as three months.

By Patrick Mooney, Editor