Sweets Way’s last stand

The last council tenant on Sweets Way housing estate in North London was evicted on Thursday 24 September after a long battle. Early in the morning, four bailiffs broke in wielding sledge-hammers and battering rams, breaking windows and scattering glass over the bedroom where Mostafa Aliverdipour, a disabled wheelchair user, was sleeping. Barnet council claims that it has offered him and his family what it called ‘suitable’ alternative accommodation in a three-storey house with no accessible downstairs bathroom or toilet. The family turned down the offer.

On the day before, bailiffs violently evicted homeless people and housing activists who were squatting the remainder of the estate in protest against its demolition. Annington Property Ltd, the new owners, plan to demolish 142 homes and build 288 homes on the site. However, these figures disguise the complete loss of social housing in the area; 80% of the properties will be for sale and 20% for rent. Only 59 will be ‘affordable’ which means not affordable for any of the former tenants or homeless people who have been evicted.

FRFI 247 October/November 2015


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