Originally posted on October 3 on my blog for Inside Housing.
After Theresa May’s warm words for housing associations, the big question was why she could not offer something similar for council housing.
She answered it today with the surprise announcement at the end of her Conservative conference speech that the borrowing cap will be scrapped.
Vital details remain to be seen. When and how the cap will be lifted? What’s in the small print? What strings will be attached to the deal?
However, the move deserves the warm initial welcome it has already received from organisations across local government and housing.
The surprise reflects what was assumed to be entrenched Treasury resistance to lifting the cap, despite years of patient advocacy from campaigners, commitment from Labour and outspoken support from the Conservative chair of the Local Government Association, Lord Porter.