Rectory Gardens protest halts auction viewing

Posted: October 31, 2012 by blackdaffodil in Uncategorized

A protest by Rectory Gardens Housing Community and Lambeth Save Our Services on Wednesday forced auctioneers to abandon a viewing of a property put up for sale by Lambeth Council. Residents and supporters blocked the entrance preventing the auctioneer from conducting his viewing.

Residents of the local housing co-operative object to the decision by Lambeth Council to start selling off “short life” houses that people have been living in for 25-30 years, and which arguably belong to the co-op not the council. This is happening across Lambeth with other co-ops as well.

Lambeth Council intends to sell all the houses in Rectory Gardens on the private market – many to property developers. Number 11, the first to be put into auction, has a reserve of £450,000. Residents have been offered priority for council housing but refuse to have their thriving community destroyed.

The council is not even using the money from sales to build more council houses and as a result the sales will result in less council owned housing and longer council waiting lists.

Dozens of protestors made their feelings clear to the auctioneer and those who turned up to view the property, many of whom were shocked to hear about how the house came to be on the market. Banners mocked the idea of Steve Reed’s “Co-operative” Lambeth Council setting out to destroy a series of housing co-operatives.

Julian Hall from Rectory Gardens HC said, “It is vital that so-called ‘Short life’ communities, that have been with us for nearly 40 years and have been mistreated by Lambeth Council, stand up against these threatened evictions and push for a more sensible solution that doesn’t tear at our social fabric and stops what is essentially a purge.”

House viewers who had been leafleted earlier in the week commented “Why don’t they just give you tenancies?”, “They could have handled this in a better way”, “I’d rather be dealing with Westminster, at least they are honest about being nasty.”

Further protests are planned to stop the sale and planned evictions of short life tenants across the borough.

Further information from:

Stuart King (Lambeth SOS) 07944 040363

Julian Hall (Rectory Gardens HC) 07810 486658

  1. […] A local community and supporters are resisting the attempt by Lambeth council to sell off their co-o… The irony of the self-declared 'co-operative council' attempting to destroy a co-operative project has clearly been lost on the council. Housing struggles like these are emerging everywhere as the attack on our right to shelter intensifies. In the context of this housing crisis, other, more communal ways of living 'look increasingly sensible' Owen Hatherley argues. […]

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  4. IA CAMERON says:

    Really nice to see the South London Press write up today. Every best wish. Will do a supportive blogspot in the next day or so. Was born in Clapham over 70 years ago and still live locally. My accomodation was Council but got shafted to Hyde Housing. Truly hope you can stop the sell off.

  5. IAN CAMERON says:

    Can anybody offer any lowdown re Christopher Wellbelove re this local sell off? Has he taken a stand or gone in with low life Reed?

    • blackdaffodill says:

      This is from one of the residents at Rectory Gardens: CW has previously been supportive and has been quoted in leaflets as such – however he is now toeing the group line and the policy of “recall” and eviction.

  6. […] week’s South London Press reported on the protest against the eviction of a housing coop in Clapham. This protest was organised by local residents […]

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