A website inspired by more developer-led lunacy
- the human stories behind a squat in Vancouver. This led us to these resources on squatting in the UK (I
). Although the squatting debate has moved on considerably from the celebrated 'occupations' of the 60s and 70s, there was a high profile story a few years ago about how a local council effectively had to give away a property to squatters on account of having 'lost' all records of their ownership - details here
. Unsurprisingly, that council was Lambeth
, one of the least competent of all London boroughs. Perhaps as a direct result of the Ellis case, Lambeth subsequently cracked down and other squatters were not
so successful (we remember this house well, with its totem pole out front).
In January 2000, some sixty flats at Oval Mansions
, a prime site overlooking the famous cricket
ground, were cleared of squatters
(quote from Lambeth housing secretary: 'The Oval squatters have been knocked for six'. Nice). Oval Mansions was a self-contained community
, with a neighbourhood centre, cafe, lively arts events (such as this
) and a general commitment to maintaining the building. What's happened since the evictions? Nothing. The handsome Victorian brick building has been crudely sealed against further intrusion, with breeze blocks in the windows. Are the council waiting for the building to slide into a ruin so it can be quietly demolished? A true disgrace.
Enough whining. Elsewhere. Some found things
. There's something weird going on here
. In 1978, the beard arrived
, and didn't leave for twenty-one years.