Skip to main content

Creating a Fairer Westminster

Delivering on our plan to build a Fairer Westminster

A Fairer Westminster is our vision for building a city that supports and celebrates all of its communities. It’s our chance to work with you to create a more inclusive Westminster, where our residents are at the heart of our decision-making.

As part of our commitment to be as open as possible about the work we do, we have now published our Fairer Westminster Delivery Plan. This sets out what we have planned for the next year and beyond, and includes the measures that you can use to hold us to account, ensuring we are keeping our promises.

The council’s Cabinet formally approved the Fairer Westminster Strategy and Delivery Plan at the Cabinet meeting on Monday, 27 March. More details of this meeting can be found on our website.

Document
Fairer Westminster Delivery Plan 2023-24

What does a Fairer Westminster mean to you?

We want everyone to understand our five key pillars, which will be used to inform the decisions we make at the council

Fairer Communities

Cities such as Westminster are built on its people – the distinctive communities that breathe life into their neighbourhoods and provide each area with identity and character. For us, a Fairer Westminster is one in which we do everything we can to reduce inequalities at every turn, from closing the life expectancy gap to tackling discrimination everywhere we find it.

Some of our objectives for this year include:

  • Testing a place-based approach to making North Paddington’s public spaces and communities healthier, wealthier and safer, and then rolling this approach out to other parts of the city.
  • Supporting our schools to be more inclusive for our most vulnerable young people (see Tia’s story, below).
  • Reducing health inequalities faced by our Global Majority communities.
  • Establishing ‘Safe Haven’ spaces and increasing our Night Stars volunteers to improve safety for women and girls.
  • Tackling youth violence and offending by providing change programmes that support our young people.

See some of the ways we’re delivering Fairer Communities here.

Image
Photo of a resident, Tia, in front of a bookshelf in a library, framed by Fairer Westminster logos and colours

Tia is the parent of a child attending St Barnabas’ CE Primary School in Pimlico and has benefited from our schools being more inclusive through our free school lunch offer...

One of the things I’ve realised when it to comes to poverty, is that it doesn’t discriminate. It can happen to any of us, and knowing that my son is coming to school having that meal, and that I’ve got extra funds I can support my family with – it gives me peace of mind, not having to be put in a position where I have to make tough decisions such as ‘do I pay for lunch this week, do I scrape and wait and be in debt at the end of the month and try to play catch-up’.

Fairer Housing

Home is where the heart is, and in a Fairer Westminster, we want to make sure the housing needs of everyone, from residents and families to social care users are met. Whether in council housing or privately rented accommodation, your homes should be well-managed, environmentally sound and, most importantly, genuinely affordable.

Some of our objectives for this year include:

  • Rehousing more people on our waiting list by building (and purchasing) more truly affordable homes (see Asaelle’s story, below).
  • Making contacting our housing staff much easier by increasing the number of officers by a third.
  • Renovating council homes to help lower our tenants’ energy bills, improve energy efficiency and reduce carbon emissions.
  • Improving privately rented property standards and removing hazardous conditions.
  • Launching a leaseholders’ charter so that our resident leaseholders can easily understand what support is available to them.

See some of the ways we’re delivering Fairer Housing here.

Image
Photo of a resident, Asaelle, in front of a new row of apartments in Ebury, framed by Fairer Westminster logos and colours
My name is Asaelle and I have lived in Doneraile House at Ebury Bridge from the moment I took my first breath. I made close friendships and watched the community grow and I’ve loved every memory created. The moment we stepped out of the gathering for returning residents, I could not contain my excitement as the new build plans brought optimism into my mind. I know I’ll love the new Ebury Bridge Estate and so will its new residents. New beginnings bring new blessings.

Fairer Economy

Westminster’s economy is rightly seen as being successful, diverse, resilient and sustainable. Supporting these values is vital to creating a Fairer Westminster that provides benefits for all residents and through this work our residents will be able to gain the right skills to benefit from the employment opportunities that come from a Fairer Economy.

Some of our objectives for this year include:

  • Improving our local high streets, such as those in Harrow Road, Praed Street and Queensway.
  • Making Oxford Street a more desirable shopping destination with upgrades to lighting, seating, pavements and greenery around the area.
  • Improving digital inclusion in our community by offering free or low cost communications packages to those who need it most.
  • Launch our Tech Lions 2.0 apprenticeship scheme to encourage young people to pursue careers in technology and management (see Abdallah’s Story, below).
  • Supporting the growth of small, independent businesses and reducing empty business premises across the city.

See some of the ways we’re delivering a Fairer Economy here.

Image
Photo of Abdallah in front of a blue and yellow background, framed by Fairer Westminster logos and colours
The Tech Lions Apprenticeship has been a great journey. I’ve gained invaluable experience as well as technical and non-technical skills. The apprenticeship has allowed me an easier way for me to get my foot in the door of a career, being around different people of different roles allowed me to see what I like and do not like. The support from Westminster Council, Multiverse and other apprentices has been outstanding.

Fairer Environment

One of the toughest challenges for any major city is tackling the climate emergency. We want to take ambitious action to become a net zero council by 2030 and a net zero city by 2040 by reducing air pollution, making sure our streets are cleaner and safer, increasing recycling rates, and using cleaner technology.

Some of our objectives for this year include:

  • reducing carbon emissions and supporting our city’s sustainability through the Sustainable City Charter (hear from the Royal Opera House, below).
  • Improving air quality and installing more school streets.
  • Encouraging more active forms of travel by developing cycle routes, installing 250 more cycle stands and at least 60 secure hangars.
  • Keeping our streets clean by taking targeted action around dumping hot spots.
  • Helping community groups improve their local green spaces through more funding and support for local green projects.

See some of the ways we’re delivering a Fairer Environment here.

Image
Exterior photo of the Royal Opera House, framed by Fairer Westminster logos and colours
We signed up for the Westminster Sustainable City Charter as we recognised this charter as the ideal mechanism for bringing local businesses and organisations together, to share ideas and find solutions. Although still in the early stages, the Royal Opera House is proud to be associated with this project and hopes that the new networks and contacts we create as a group will enable us to make impactful, collective changes.

Fairer Council

A Fairer Council is one you can trust to make the right decisions for your needs, and that means putting our residents at the heart of all our decision making. We want every action we take to result from listening to you. We also want to continue being a financially sustainable council, always able to support residents and businesses.

Some of our objectives for this year include:

  • Helping our residents through the cost of living crisis by distributing at least a further £2million in addition to government schemes.
  • Making it easier for residents to shape the planning policies that influence development in their local areas (see Atanaska’s Story, below).
  • Making our own workforce more representative of our communities and reducing pay gaps within the council.
  • Making reporting street issues easier with a redesigned Report It tool based on your feedback.
  • Improve how we listen to our residents and incorporate their views into our work, which will be informed by the Charter for Community Participation.

See some of the ways we’re delivering a Fairer Council here.

Image
Photo of a resident, Atanaska, at a council meeting, framed by Fairer Westminster logos and colours
I live in Maida Vale and I have been a Westminster resident for about 28 years. I really care about the community, and we have a really good community. We support each other and it’s good to look after neighbours. For example, I represent some of our eldest and if they have any issues, usually they come to me and I can report to try to do better. I have the opportunity to say anything I want, to give my view and opinion to the council. I’ve been listened to and I encourage residents to get involved with the council all the time.