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Kingston Town

Council promises better support to rough sleepers

James Giles

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Around 400 homeless people in South West London could be helped ‘off the streets’ thanks to a £400k grant.

Kingston, Richmond and Wandsworth councils have been awarded £400k from the Department of Communities and Local Government to fund innovative homelessness prevention schemes and help support rough sleepers.

The councils, together with homelessness charity SPEAR, applied for the funding to expand existing support programmes and introduce new services in each borough.

SPEAR is a charity working with homeless people in South West London. It offers services to street homeless and vulnerable people, to enable them to find secure accommodation.

This funding will enable the current service to be expanded in Richmond and will fund two new outreach model services plus enhanced accommodation in Kingston and Wandsworth.

Cllr Kevin Davis, Leader of Kingston Council, said:

“This funding from the Government will help us to meet the objectives set out in our housing strategy and contribute towards securing a brighter future for rough sleepers and vulnerable households in our borough”

Stuart Nevill from SPEAR Chief Executive, commented:

“Our work preventing homelessness and providing fast and effective solutions for people rough sleeping in South West London is a matter of the utmost urgency – peoples lives depend on it. Rough sleeping continues to grow and so must the services we provide. This grant will enable us to work with more rough sleepers, building on our strong partnership with Kingston, Richmond and Wandsworth councils.”

James Giles is the Editor of the Kingston Enquirer, covering local news and events in Kingston, New Malden, Surbiton, Tolworth and Chessington.

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Kingston Town

EXCLUSIVE: Council refuse to deny ‘interim interim CEO’ lied on job application

James Giles

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KINGSTON Council have refused to deny that the newly-appointed ‘interim interim CEO’, Gill Steward, who is on a six-week contract with Kingston Council, lied about her qualifications when applying for the role.

Gill Steward, who until recently was Chief Executive of Bexley Council, claims on her LinkedIn profile to have a Masters degree in Public Administration from Warwick University.

However, leaked documents from Bexley Council, seen by this publication, reveal that Ms. Steward never completed her Masters degree, dropping out before completing the course.

When Kingston Council were asked whether Ms. Steward had misled the authority when applying for the job, together with a request to confirm Ms. Steward’s qualifications they refused to comment, instead releasing the following statement: “Due to health reasons, the responsibilities of the current interim CEO, Roy Thompson, are being picked up by members of the council’s permanent leadership team for a period of six weeks.

“Based on her experience and track record, Gill Steward has been brought on board, three-days a week, to support the leadership team during this time.”
Councillor Kevin Davis, Leader of the Opposition, said: “I asked Cllr Green about the application and she told me that it was all handled by HR and she did not see the information. On checking she tells me Gill’s CV was accurate. I have not seen the paperwork myself so can’t say more.”
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