The average rent has skyrocketed in Greenwich over the last six years according to figures from trade union GMB .

Prices for a two-bedroom home in the borough rose from £900 to £1,350, while average earnings only increased by £151.

Greenwich ranked highest in the study of 33 London boroughs by GMB, which said if not checked the gap would lead to a drop in consumer spending and further recession.

Next in the league was Newham where rent rose by 47.4%, from £950 to £1,400, while earnings increased by £122.

Hackney came 13th on the table with an increase of 33.8% in rents to £1,798 and but only a £1 income increase.

Tower Hamlets came 21st with a 25.9% increase in rent from £1,430 to £1,800 and an £219 increase in earnings.

In London as a whole, workers are paying out an average 53.3% of their earnings on rent, up from 44.9% in 2011. This is significantly higher than the England average figure of 27.4%.

“These figures demonstrate the extent of the squeeze felt by workers and their families in London since the financial crisis in 2008, said GMB London regional secretary Warren Kenny.

“Rents have surged upwards as pay has been stagnant or falling.

“Pay has to rise to allow workers to afford these ever rising rents so the public sector pay cap and the below inflation pay rises in both the public and private sectors has to end to avoid a drop in consumer spending, which, if not checked will lead to a further recession.:

He said building more homes for rent in London was “absolutely essential” and the tie for talk was over with work needing to start “without delay”.

He blamed the situation on decisions of the Thatcher government in the 1980’s to sell council housing stock, and not replace it, and to pay landlords housing benefit instead of providing social housing directly.

“It has been a huge and expensive mistake.

“Last year, for example, £24 billion was spent on housing benefit, with much of this public money ending up untaxed in bank accounts in offshore tax havens.

“If a fraction of that amount had been spent on social housing for rent, the strain on the tax payer would be less and people would have housing they can afford to live in.

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