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Name Landlords Paid Housing Benefits

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

62 Councils Should Disclose Top Private Landlords Being Paid Housing Benefits As 318 Councils Have Already Done Says GMB

It is disgraceful that councils have refused to reveal this information since the public has a right to know where this public money is going and if taxes are being paid on it says GMB.

GMB is calling on the 62 councils in England, Wales and Scotland to disclose the names of the top 20 landlords that receive housing benefit direct from each council for tenants renting their properties. These 62 councils did not supply this information while the other 318 out of 380 councils did so.

The councils that failed to disclose the top 20 landlords are as follows: Ashford, Aylesbury Vale, Barking and Dagenham, Bath and North East Somerset, Bolton, Bracknell Forest, Bromley, Christchurch, Copeland, Derbyshire Dales, East Ayrshire, East   Dorset, East Lothian, East Renfrewshire, Eden, Eilean Siar, Elmbridge, Guildford, Halton, Hambleton, Harlow, Havering, Herefordshire, Hertsmere, Kingston upon Hull, Lambeth, Leeds, Lewisham, Luton, Newark and Sherwood, Newham, North Dorset, North East Derbyshire, North Norfolk, North Warwickshire, Norwich, Pendle, Reigate and Banstead, Renfrewshire, Richmondshire, Rossendale, Rugby, Salford, Sedgemoor, Sefton,  Shropshire, South Ayrshire, South Derbyshire, South Lakeland, South Somerset, South   Tyneside, Tewkesbury, The Vale of Glamorgan, Three Rivers, Thurrock, Trafford, Walsall, Warwick, Watford, Wellingborough, Wigan and Wyre Forest.

Last week GMB published a study showing the top twenty company landlords in each of the other 318 out of 380 councils in Great Britain that receive housing benefit direct from councils for tenants renting their properties. Details for the top twenty landlords in these 318 councils ranked by the amounts they received by council are set out in the pdf attached at the foot of this release. There are tabs at foot of excel tables for each region.

Taxpayer spent £9.028 billion in the year to end November 2013 to pay rent to private landlords for 1.65 million privately owned dwelling they rent out to households in Great Britain. The GMB study sought to establish how much of this money is paid to the top 20 landlords paid money by each council. . See notes to editors for the latest available figures for the number of private rented households and the number and % of housing benefit recipients in the private rented sector by region and for the top 20 councils with the highest percentages.

 Some organizations receiving large sums across the country are as follows:

  • Jomast Property / John Monk & Co – Over £210,000 in the North East. Owner Stuart Monk equal 554th on the Sunday Times Rich List with wealth estimated at £147m. Developed Hartlepool Marina.
  • Stockton Flats - Over £1.7m in total from councils in North East, North West and North Yorkshire.
  • European Wellcare Lifestyles Ltd  - Part of European Care Group. Parent company Esquire Group Investment (Holdings) Ltd based in the British Virgin Islands as are another 5 companies within the group. 4 other group companies are based in Guernsey.
  • Grainger Residential Management / PHA Ltd / Grip Nomco 1 & 2 - £1.2m across 16 districts. Part of Grainger PLC with fixed assets of £618m, current assets of £1bn and turnover of £283m. In 2013 own 13,353 units with a market value of £1.8bn. They manage 8,216 units with market value of £953m.
  • Associated Property Owners Ltd – £89,000. Directors are Lady Diana Errington, Robin Errington, Anne Errington, David Errington, Stuart Errington and William Saville. Directors of the parent company, Associated Property Holdings Ltd, include Sir Geoffrey Errington (2nd Baronet Errington, of Ness).
  • Northwood - National lettings Agency getting over £2.3m nationally.
  • Blackshaw Holdings – £442,000. Owner, John Brooksbank, on the Sunday Times Rich list with wealth estimated at £100m.
  • Martin & Co - Letting Agents, £3.1m from 20 districts nationally.
  • Chatsworth Trust - £10,000
  • LHT Enterprise - £8,800 from Craven. Michael Bannister, owner of Coniston Hall and the Boundary Mill chain.
  • Mountview Estates Plc - Duncan Sinclair, 901st on Sunday Times rich list worth £87m. £300,000 from 9 districts
  • Buckminster Trust Estate – Sir Lyonel Tollemache donor to the Tory party. Buckminster is a country  estate in Leicestershire. £37,000.
  • Compton Estates – Castle Ashby Estate, seat of Lord Northampton, Spencer Compton, 7th Marquess of Northampton. One of Britain’s wealthiest aristocrats, =766th on Sunday Times rich list with estimated wealth of £103m. £21,000.
  • Grimsthorpe & Drummond Castle Trust Ltd – owner of Grimsthorpe Castle is Baroness Jane Willoughby De Eresby, daughter of the 3rd Earl of Ancaster and grand daughter of Nancy Astor. Inherited Grimsthorpe Castle in Lincolnshire and Drummond Castle in Perthshire. £19,000
  • Cecil Estate Family Trust - £17,000
  • Burghley House Pres. Trust Ltd - £9,000
  • Penk Holdings Ltd – Directors Alan and Joanna Monckton of Horsebrook Hall, Stafford (former High Sheriff of Staffordshire) and Piers Monckton of Stretton Hall, Stafford. £12,000
  • ADA Glossop / Glossop Caravans - £1.1m across 15 districts nationally.
  • Marquess of Hertford - £15,000 from Stratford. Henry Seymour’s country estate is Ragley Hall in Warwickshire.
  • Thorney Bay Park Ltd - £1.45m from Castle Point. Donated £3,000 to conservatives in 2001.
  • Cadogan Estates Ltd - Charles G Cadogan, 8th Earl Cadogan, 18th on Sunday Times Rich list (£3,675m) and Tory donor. £116,000
  • Grosvenor Estate Belgravia - Part of Grovenor Group. Fixed assets of £4,272,300,000. Headed by the Duke of Westminster who is in the Sunday Times Rich list as 8th richest person in Britain with wealth estimated at £7.8bn. £243,000
  • Lazari Investments Ltd – Chris Lazari is 101st on the Sunday Times Rich list with wealth estimated at 858m. £200,000
  • Woodlands Estates – Owned by Andrew Charalambous, UKIP housing spokesman. £745,000
  • Caridon Property - £2.6m across 9 London Boroughs
  • Cowdray Estate / Paddockhurst Estate - £118,000. Viscount Cowdray listed on the Sunday Times rich list in =224th place with wealth estimated at £400m. The family firm is the Pearson Media Group and he the family seat is Cowdray Park in West Sussex.
  • Southwick Estates - £39,000 from Winchester. A 7,000 acre private estate which owns nearly all of the village of Southwick. Owned by the Thistlethwayte family.
  • Englefield Estate / Gerald Palmer Eling Trust – Owned by conservative MP, Richard Benyon. His family are =713th on the Sunday Times rich list with wealth of £110m. He is one of the wealthiest MPs in Parliament. The family seat is Englefield House and 20,000 acre Estate in Berkshire.£119,237.
  • Yattendon Estates - £195,000 from West Berkshire. Lord Robert Iliffe =333rd on the Sunday Times rich list with wealth of £245m. Yattendon is a 9,000 acre estate in West Berkshire
  • Patricroft Investments - £49,000 from Worthing. Company is based in Gibralter.
  • Allsop Residential Investment Management Ltd – one of the partners is Timothy Theakston, one of the Theakston Brewery brothers. £137,000 from Brighton & Hove
  • HRH Estates Company - £349,000 from Medway
  • Sir Richard Sutton’s Settled Estates – Sir Richard Sutton, 9th Baronet, =522nd on the Sunday Times rich list with wealth of £150m. £68,000 from West Berkshire.
  • Blackmoor Estate Ltd - £18,000 from East Hampshire. Owned by the Earl and Countess of Selborne. Earl Selborne is a conservative hereditary peer.
  • Knepp Castle Estate Office - £15,000 from Horsham. A 3,500 acre Estate in West Sussex owned by Sir Charles Burrell, 10th Baronet. Owner of Knepp Castle.
  • Viscount Asquith Estate - £17,000 from Mendip.
  • Morden Estates - £14,000 from Purbeck. Owned by Richard Grosvenor Plunkett-Ernle-Erle-Drax, conservative MP for South Dorset. Family seat is Charborough House in Dorset.
  • Powis Castle Estates - £34,000 from Powys. Owned by John Herbert, 8th Earl of Powis
  • Hawarden Estate – Sir Erskine ‘William’ Gladstone, 7th Baronet, owner of Hawarden Castle in Flintshire. £43,000 from Flintshire.
  • Strathmore Estates Holding Ltd - Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne, the Queens cousin and owner of Glamis Castle £11,500 from Angus.
  • Moray Estates Development Company - Earl of Moray, owner of Darnaway Castle. £10,000 from Moray.
  • Argyll Estates - £126,000 from Argyll and Bute. 50,000 acre estate including Inveraray Castle, home to Torquhil Campbell, the Duke of Argyll.
  • Wemyss Properties Ltd – Owned by William Wemyss, part of a Scottish business dynasty which includes property, whisky and gin production and energy production. £141,000 from Fife.
  • Haddo Estate - £42,000 from Aberdeenshire. Owned by the Marquess and Marchioness of Aberdeen.

For 30% of tenants entitled to housing benefit the cash is paid direct to landlords. To establish the identity of these landlords GMB carried out research at the Land Registry to establish the beneficial owners of properties and Freedom of Information requests were made to councils to establish the amounts paid to them. In most cases the ultimate recipients of housing benefit and amounts were disclosed by councils where the landlords are companies and the information was redacted where the landlords were sole traders.

Paul Kenny, GMB General Secretary, said, "It is disgraceful that 62 councils refused to reveal the landlords they paid huge sums to.

There should be transparency. The public has a right to know where this money is going and if taxes are being paid on it.

Our research lifts the lid on the mainly secret payments to landlords who are the real winners from Britain's welfare system. We see taxpayers cash subsidising buy-to-let empires where the money ends up tax free in tax havens.

The research shows the rich and powerful sucking up taxpayer’s money through housing benefit. This is made possible by out of control rents and a lack of affordable and council homes that so many hard working people and their families desperately need.

This should bring both shame and action from this government to end this exploitation of public money.

These billions going into fat cats wallets and off shore tax havens would be better spent building houses and homes for real working people. Shovelling millions of pounds to the likes of castle owning barons, whilst so many either wait for a home or have to pay exorbitant rents, is a public scandal. It is also bad economics for the nation.

The landlords we name do not seem to understand that GMB is seeking a fundamental change in policy on funding social housing. This is not a new stance by the union.

Mrs Thatcher changed the labour movement traditional policy of spending money on bricks to spending the money on rents. Since then some £411 billion public funds has been spent on rents. It would be far cheaper to build social houses for rent and stop this money lining the pockets of the already wealthy.

The labour movement secured a law in 1907 to allow councils to build houses for rent. This was reversed in the 1980s. This was a serious policy mistake and the cost to the public purse is now becoming apparent. The growth in "buy to let" empires funded by the policy is heaping additional costs on the Exchequer. The figure may be at least £3 billion per annum and is growing.”

End

Contact Kamaljeet Jandu 07956 237178 or Gary Doolan 07852 182358 or Cath Speight 07505 711925 or Lisa Johnson 07900 392228 GMB Press Office 07921 289 880 or 07974 251 823

Notes to editors

1) number of private rented households and the % of privately rented households in receipt of housing benefits by Region and for the top 20 councils in Great Britain in November 2013.

 

 

All private rented households

Housing benefit recipients in the private rented sector

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Britain

4,195,070

1,645,504

39.2

 

England and Wales

3,900,178

1,548,342

39.7

 

 

 

 

 

 

North East

154,426

79,571

51.5

 

North West

462,899

219,536

47.4

 

Wales

184,254

85,896

46.6

 

West Midlands

321,670

136,615

42.5

 

Yorkshire and The Humber

353,448

148,221

41.9

 

South West

387,134

154,663

40.0

 

East Midlands

282,443

108,527

38.4

 

East of England

356,227

129,362

36.3

 

South East

578,592

208,449

36.0

 

London

819,085

277,502

33.9

 

Scotland

294,892

97,168

33.0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

rank

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

Blackpool UA

16,770

15,037

89.7

2

Tendring

10,064

8,141

80.9

3

Knowsley

5,980

4,734

79.2

4

Neath Port Talbot

6,186

4,747

76.7

5

Castle Point

3,968

2,968

74.8

6

Middlesbrough UA

9,509

6,964

73.2

7

Torbay UA

13,696

9,776

71.4

8

Great Yarmouth

6,926

4,894

70.7

9

Enfield

26,591

18,737

70.5

10

North Ayrshire

5,652

3,976

70.3

11

Sefton

15,804

10,780

68.2

12

Wyre

6,397

4,349

68.0

13

Bridgend

7,188

4,847

67.4

14

Hartlepool UA

5,971

4,023

67.4

15

Thanet

14,151

9,419

66.6

16

Burnley

7,267

4,802

66.1

17

Wirral

22,275

14,709

66.0

18

Denbighshire

6,446

4,215

65.4

19

North East Lincolnshire UA

12,627

7,918

62.7

20

Southend-on-Sea UA

16,439

10,282

62.5

Sources - Crown Copyright Reserved: DWP; Office for National Statistics

Housing Benefit Statistics - November 2013 and Census of Population data – 2011

 

 

 

 

 

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Additional Resources

Results of Freedom of Information Requests from Councils

download xlsx190Kb (xlsx) - 04 March 2014

Full table of figures