Tower Hamlets, as ever, remains one of the more politically dynamic boroughs in the country.

While it has returned two Labour MPs, Rushnara Ali (Bethnal Green) and Apsana Begum (Poplar and Limehouse), the campaigns were plagued with intrigue and the usual accusations of malpractice.

The issue of Gaza was highly prominent and while all candidates held a broadly consistent personal position on the issue, the Labour candidate came under significant attack for the party’s position.

Keir Starmer’s comments regarding the Bengali community, just a week out from the election, created significant waves in the contest.

This led the Deputy Leader of the Labour group, and possible contender for the Mayor of Tower Hamlets in 2026, Cllr Sabina Akhtar to resign from the party.

The Council itself, run by Mayor Lutfur Rahman and his Aspire Party, is still under investigation by DHLUC. A report is likely due in July, following a delay enforced by the snap election, and there is a general expectation that the report will be damning.

The possibility of Inspectors taking control of some or all of Tower Hamlets’ critical services is real. This could affect the progress of existing and future development in what is already a challenging borough to navigate.

Until the outcome of that report becomes clear, the administration remains ostensibly pro-housing. The emerging affordable housing guidance in their new local plan may give some pause, as the raising of affordable housing requirements runs counter to the current reality of the residential market.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Stay up-to-date with the latest news in the sector