Rough sleepers will be helped with a £485,000 grant.

Redbridge Council was given the cash by the government.

Cllr Farah Hussain, cabinet member for housing and homelessness, announced the council’s successful bid to secure the government grant in a report at an overview committee meeting last night.

She said the money would be used to support the council’s engagement with rough sleepers and its outreach programmes – including Project Malachi; the pop-up homeless hostel due to appear in Ilford Town Centre later this year.

The council also announced it will officially adopt the rough sleeping protocol; a set of guidelines for London councils that tells council officers, social workers and others how to behave and what action to take when engaging with rough sleepers.

The protocol is designed to protect both rough sleepers and outreach officers, ensuring dignity and fair treatment for all involved and to make sure rough sleepers get access to all of the systems of support they need.

Members of the overview committee congratulated Cllr Hussain on her part in securing the funding and agreed unanimously to adopt the protocol.

Cllr Linda Huggett, chair of the committee, said: “This is a very emotive report, congratulations, this is very good news.”

Other councillors enquired about the possibility of extending Project Malachi; a Salvation Army scheme which will see old shipping containers converted to stand-alone apartments providing temporary accommodation for the resident homeless of Redbridge on a site not far from the town hall.

Ilford’s Salvation Army corps will staff the site 24 hours a day, seven days a week and will provide pastoral care and support for those staying on site, getting them off the streets.

The council unanimously granted planning permission for the scheme earlier this year, but only for a five-year term.

Cllr Rai explained that the site Project Malachi will sit on on Chadwick Road, Ilford has been earmarked by the council for redevelopment in future, so cannot be used indefinitely for the hostel.

But Cllr Hussain added: “The nature of the pop-up hostel is that it can be moved elsewhere and I’m sure there will be other sites available at the time. We will review the situation in four years’ time.”