After yesterday’s eviction resistance action in support of 35 years resident Trace in Lambeth, supporters went door knocking in the neighbourhood, to create a phone tree for resisting future eviction attempts.
This followup action was initiated by a single supporter:
“I went down there again today on what turned out to be a false alarm this time. A police van was seen driving past and Trace asked for people to come in case the bailiffs came after the reconnaissance. I decided to use the time to do a little more than sit around to see if the bailiffs were going to turn up. I said I was going to canvas her neighbours to build a list of people who could be part of a rapid response if the bailiffs did turn up. A couple of other people said they would canvas as well.
I did one street over from where Trace lives. Most doors I knocked nobody answered, probably at work or too elderly to open the door to a stranger without an appointment. Those who did answer I explained I had come over from Herne Hill on what was a false alarm and what we were trying to do was build a rapid response team of local people who if they were around could lend support at short notice. Of the seven people I did speak to, six of them agreed to give their phone numbers and said they would walk round to Trace’s if they received a text saying the bailiffs were there.
The other people who went canvassing got an equally good response. This is an example of what building a movement means in practice, not relying on a small number of activists who will burn themselves out trying to respond to everything.”
A beautiful house has been occupied on the Sweets Way estate in Barnet. Come down to check out the estate, chat to some local residents, and help create a community space!
The Sweets Way estate is in the process of a total decant, with about 15 households left of almost 160. The houses are in perfect condition, but are due to be knocked down by developer Annington Homes to double the density with only 33 ‘affordable’ units. Residents have no right of return. The estate has been used as temporary accommodation for Barnet Council via Notting Hill Housing Trust, in some cases for up to 6 years. The residents are at the beginning of their political action together, and are currently coming together to discuss their collective demands of the council.
This is yet another case of developers manipulating the class composition of an area to increase their profits. Residents who have been in Barnet for decades are being forced out, aided by council policy to force up rents to 80% of market rates. They are looking for support in this battle, so if you can get on the Northern line we are only 26mins from Kings Cross.
Check Barnet Housing Action Group and the Radical Housing Network sites, as well as @SweetsWayN20 twitter for updates.
First and foremost, it is the solidarity of people coming and helping out that will win back the homes in this community. Come meet us and support us!
VIDEO: the children of Sweets Way speak up: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hyeD-x-uDCA
Posted in 2015, bailiffs, banner, council housing, crisis, london, protest, resistance, social housing, squat, squatters, squatting, Sweets Way
Barnet Housing Action Group held an anti-eviction protest at Sweets Way Estate on the 16th of February, resisting the eviction of four families, some of the last remaining residents in this site of social cleansing. The Bailiffs got scared off – showed up and drove away.
The FIGHTBACK has begun!!
Residents moved on to Barnet House Council Office, getting it under lockdown for two hours: but Barnet residents and newly homeless were refused entry by security.
Two newly homeless people and a witness secured entry for a meeting with Housing Officers….who have promised (on video) that each affected family will be contacted for a meeting this afternoon and be offered suitable housing locally. More actions planned this week – help wanted, including anyone with legal/advocacy experience!
The forces of darkness stalled by a peaceful demonstration outside the squatted property. On talking to the occupants we learnt that the building had been empty for 13 years and it had now been put back into use as a home for fourteen individuals. A hearty cooked breakfast was enjoyed by the 50 strong turn out and there was much celebration when the bailiffs decided not to go ahead with the eviction. This resistance was back in May, to our knowledge the property still remains squatted to this day.
Posted in autonomous spaces, bailiffs, banner, crisis, demonstration, eviction, hackney, homeless, london, possession order, protest, resistance, section 6, shelter, squat, squatters, squatting