Council developer’s £69 million overspend

Brick by Brick is a subsidiary building developer that is owned by the Council and which has proven disastrous for our area. As well as over-developing much of the south of the Borough, it has proven unprofitable and has required a tax-payer funded bailout of £250 million.

Now it has been revealed that the developer over-spent the re-development of Fairfield Halls by over £69 million – inexcusably over double the original £30 million budget, and a shock increase on the previously thought £45 million overspend. The Fairfield “improvements” have proven mainly cosmetic. This is on top of the fact that Croydon has loaned Brick by Brick £200 million since their launch in 2015, with not a single penny being repaid. The developer’s track record has been abysmally poor, and Brick by Brick has failed to deliver value for money to taxpayers. Even during Fairfield Halls’ brief opening period between November 2019 and March 2020, it was clear that there were many issues that the developer had left incomplete and unfinished, leading to this overspend.

The bigger issue here is that this damage is continuing to affect services. The waste and the bailouts mean that other, vital services are being closed. Purley Pool currently looks set to stay closed, and almost half the borough’s libraries face permanent closure due to “cost”. Yet the libraries cost just £0.5 million a year to run – instead the Labour administration, having bankrupted the Council, is choosing to siphon funds to its failed developer.