The deal will enable redevelopment of the hospital and secure 50 per cent affordable housing

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has used his new £250m Land Fund for the first time to purchase a site at St Ann’s Hospital in Haringey.  

The deal worth tens of millions of pounds with Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust to buy two thirds of the NHS site will enable the redevelopment of the hospital and provide up to 800 new homes, with 50 per cent being genuinely affordable.

Khan intends to use the Land Fund to buy further sites in London to prepare land for new and affordable housing – and has urged local authorities across the country to consider following suit. 

The money secured from selling land to housing associations, councils and Community Land Trusts will be recycled to buy further land to build homes and unlock further opportunities across the capital.

The number of affordable homes at St Ann’s is a significant increase on existing planning permission for the site – secured originally in 2015 – which would have delivered only 470 homes, with just 14 per cent being affordable.

City Hall’s investment will provide redeveloped NHS facilities on the 11-hectare site, including a new mental health inpatient building. 

The Mayor said: “I am determined to do everything with the powers and resources at my disposal to tackle the housing crisis head on, and crucially that means building more new and genuinely affordable homes for Londoners.

“As Mayor, I’ve set out how City Hall will take a more active and direct approach to unlocking sites across the capital. Late last year I announced my plans for a new Land Fund to buy sites – and at St Ann’s we are showing what this can achieve.

“Not only will my intervention unlock this site, but it will also allow us nearly to double the number of homes, and crucially increase six-fold the number of affordable homes that had previously been given planning permission. I am pleased my investment will see the redevelopment of a new mental health facility and in due course we will recycle this fund to buy more sites so that we can build more affordable homes.

“Despite the government still failing to give us the investment and powers we need to make a true step change in homebuilding in London, we are showing what can be done. It is an approach councils and other local authorities across the country may look to adopt to ensure they play a key role in fixing the housing crisis.”

Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust chairman, Michael Fox, said: “This is very exciting news for the Trust, our patients and our staff. We are delighted that the Mayor of London has stepped in and purchased the surplus land, which means the current mental health inpatient wards at St Ann’s Hospital will soon be replaced by brand new, state-of-the-art mental health facilities. We look forward to working with him as the plans for the residential development progress and we build our new mental health wards, which will be amongst the best in the country.”

The deal also represents a success for the new London Estates Board – formed in November last year – of London and national partners to support the release of capital from surplus NHS estate and land to be reinvested in the city’s health and care system, as well as contributing to housing supply.

Geoff Alltimes, co-chair London Estates Board, said: “This is great news and a major milestone for the NHS in London. It is an example of the collaboration and partnership working that the London Estates Board has supported and is seeking to achieve at a greater scale going forward.”

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