Billionaire Duke of Westminster ‘plans to demolish council homes to build luxury London flats’

Hugh Grosvenor, the Duke of Westminster, plans to knock a London building down and build luxury flats, it has been reported (Picture: PA)

A billionaire Duke plans to demolish council homes in London and replace them with luxury flats, it has been reported.

The property group run by Hugh Grosvenor, 28, the seventh Duke of Westminster, wants to knock down Walden House in Westminster and build shops and homes, which would include social housing.

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But 40 families in existing council homes say they were only told of the plans in March, seven years after private tenants in neighbouring flats, the Sunday People reported.

The Duke is the world’s richest person under 30 with an estimated wealth of up to £10 billion.

Walden House in Westminster (Picture: Google)

His property group, Grosvenor, currently leases Walden House to Westminster Council, but plans to knock it down by 2023.

The plan would affect 141 residents, eight of whom are disabled. Some residents have lived in the homes for up to 40 years. They have been told they may apply for new homes up to 12 miles away.

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NHS PA and resident Liza Begum, 34, who has lived at Walden House all her life, told the Sunday People: “It’s social cleansing.

“What do Grosvenor expect us to do? Move from a place we’ve been for 30-plus years and start again? It’s ridiculous.”

An online petition against the plans has received more than 100,000 signatures on Change.org.

Residents have gathered more than 100,000 online signatures opposing the plans (Picture: Change.org)
Hugh Grosvenor, the 7th Duke of Westminster, centre, with former prime minister Theresa May and the Duke of Cambridge (Picture: PA)

The Grosvenor group said it wants more affordable housing in the area and has delayed demolition from 2021 to 2023 to give residents more time to find somewhere else.

“We have been providing tailored support over and above what is required to help residents,” it said.

Westminster Council said: “We negotiated a two-year extension to the lease, to 2023, to allow more time to find residents accommodation.

“All will be offered suitable alternative council accommodation within Westminster.”

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