Lambeth Council has raised close to £24 million from public land and building sales since 2016.

This includes raising more than £22m from controversial “short life” housing sales, as local authority funding is “slashed”.

The figures obtained by The Bureau of Investigative Journalism show the council’s biggest sale came from Rectory Grove in Clapham, which sold for £22m in 2017.

Lambeth also raised £580,000 from “short-life” housing sales in Lillieshall Road in Clapham in 2016.

The council sold the “short life” properties after evicting residents, many of whom had lived in the properties for decades while they paid little to no rent.

The residents were never given tenancy rights because the council was not able to bring the homes up to the minimum rental standards, with many of the homes marked for demolition and in need of repair.

Evicted tenants included local artist Tony Healy who was evicted from his home of 30 years in 2016, aged 81.

Other residents reported spending time and money upgrading the homes, boosting their value.

Residents were offered other council homes and could also purchase the property at a discount, according to council documents, but the evictions drew criticism including from Labour MP Kate Hoey.

Lambeth also raised £900,000 in 2018 from the sale of a dilapidated five-bed house in Paulet Road, with the tenant re-housed in a one-bed council flat.

Land in Bellefields Road was sold for £450,000.

Cllr Andy Wilson, Lambeth’s cabinet member for finance, said the sales were used to fund council investment in its assets.

“We have endured a decade of government budget cuts, amounting to over 50 per cent in our core funding – over £230m – slashed from our budget between 2010 and 2020. And we now need to find another £38m of savings over the next four years,” he explained.

“Like councils all over the country, we have to find the money wherever we can to keep funding our priority services. This has largely come from making savings across the organisation, while avoiding ill-advised moves like running down the council’s reserves,” he said.