Having heard some derogatory remarks about Lady Thatcher by a group of people, some of whom may live in houses bought by their parents under the right to buy council house scheme, I feel I must try to set the record straight.
The right to buy was introduced to promote private ownership and reduce the reliance of people on the local council for housing. It was designed to help tenants who could not save sufficient deposits to buy a house on the open market, but could afford reasonable mortgage repayments. It did not affect the council house waiting lists, as the people who bought them were already council tenants.
The loss of rents paid to the council could be broadly offset by the council no longer being responsible for the maintenance on an ever-ageing housing stock. The current shortage of council housing is due to rising demand and local councils’s lack of planning for the future, not Mrs Thatcher.
Critics of Lady Thatcher surely cannot doubt her integrity, courage, and foresight. She had the foresight to drag the United Kingdom, with the Labour Party and trade unions, kicking and screaming into the 21st Century. We all owe her a great debt of gratitude.