Nearly £10,000 has been spent sending Wandsworth councillors and staff on trips to the south of France.

A Freedom of Information request by the Wandsworth Times found that every year since 2010, members of staff have attended the MIPIM, a four day real estate exhibition in Cannes, paid for with taxpayer money.

Opposition leader Simon Hogg says the interests of developers are being put ahead of residents, while council leader Ravi Govindia says the benefits far outweigh the costs.

“Our attendance at Mipim has always been on behalf of the Nine Elms Vauxhall Partnership which includes Wandsworth and Lambeth councils, the Greater London Authority, Transport for London and private developers and landowners involved in the regeneration of Nine Elms," Cllr Govindia said.

"This is a public-private partnership which has been working together for the past decade to regenerate this part of Battersea and Vauxhall.

"When complete it will deliver 20,000 new homes, 6.5m sq ft of commercial and office space plus a tube link to Battersea for the very first time.

"The construction phase has created 20,000 jobs and there will be 25,000 permanent ones available to local people when the project is complete."

The largest amount spent by the council for a single conference was in the 2010/11 financial year when £4,400 was spent on travel, flights and accommodation.

Of the four years after that, more than £1,000 was spent at three. But since 2014/15, the council has spent just £1,095, including £99 this year.

But Wandsworth Labour leader Simon Hogg says the council should be more open about where money is being spent.

“Wandsworth Conservatives put the interests of property developers ahead of the interests of local people," he said

"Instead of genuinely affordable homes for local people we get vastly expensive riverside flats for overseas investors.

“Wandsworth Conservatives let the developers of Battersea Power Station cut 250 affordable homes from the scheme. These favours for property developers are unacceptable.

“Things must change. Wandsworth Labour councillors do not accept gifts or hospitality from property developers. We believe all planning meetings should be streamed live and all deals

with developers should be made public.”

But Wandsworth haven't been the only local authority to attend the event.

This was something Cllr Govindia made sure to point out.

“We have attracted hundreds of millions of pounds of investment to Wandsworth which is helping us deliver the jobs, schools, health centres and new homes, including thousands of affordable homes, that local people need," he added.

"Town halls have to battle for every penny of inward investment if they want to deliver these improvements which is why at least a dozen London local authorities attended MIPIM this year including Ealing, Hounslow, Croydon, Barking and Dagenham, Harrow and Waltham Forest along with big cities like Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham and Sheffield.”