SQUATTERS have been evicted from the grand house at 5 St Mark’s Rise on the corner of Colvestone Crescent in Dalston. The ten young residents left peacefully. A tip that Hackney council would make its move early today 2 March 2012 turned out to be accurate.
The squatters, who had lived in the Victorian house for more than three years, will be replaced by what are termed “property guardians” – licensed squatters.
Then the property will be sold to a private developer. A town hall source told Loving Dalston last October that fire damage had made the property “structurally unsound”. The squatters, however, continued to live there, and run a successful vegetable garden at the rear, for a further five months.
The council’s claim of fire damage could be used to justify a future owner’s applying to demolish the sturdy house and build new flats. The squatters said they would move to accommodation offered by friends in other London squats. Bailiffs spent the rest of the day making the property squatter-proof.
Rueben Taylor, of Squatters’ Action for Secure Homes, said: “This is a sad example of policies that force people on to the streets just to increase profit. With homelessness up by 23% in the last year, and a million young people without work, there could not be a worse time to launch an attack on some of the most vulnerable members of society.
“The government is seeking to criminalise those who make a home in abandoned buildings: with 700,000 properties lying empty in England and Wales, this is not only unnecessary and unaffordable, but deeply unjust.”
David Altheer 020312
* All pictures on this page © DavidAltheer[at]gmail.com. All for sale for reproduction. Most photographs can be visually enlarged by pressing on them.
* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained. Most photographs can be visually enlarged by pressing on them.