Protestors occupy Britain's biggest council estate set for eviction

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Protestors occupy Britain's biggest council estate set for eviction

Up to 100 people are occupying a block of flats on the Aylesbury Estate in Southwark in a protest against the sites demolition.

The protestors say the planned changes are down to ‘social cleansing’ the the area, blaming Southwark councils’ aim to gentrify the area.

The site in Elephant and Castle currently supplies 2700 homes, although many are unoccupied due to the demolition plans. 

The estate has previously received bad press about the structural integrity of the buildings, however residents insist that the buildings are structurally sound and there is no need refurbishment.

Today the tenants are bringing their case against the council in court to fight Southwark Council's attempt to evict them.

Supporters held a demonstration outside Lambeth County Court, London Live’s Reya El-Salahi was there.


The Aylesbury Estate is one of historical value. It was the first place where former Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair made his first speech 1997. 

The demolition of the estate has been ongoing since 2001, where tenants were asked to vote on the demolition then, the outcome was a  73 per cent majority against the plans.

Now Southwark Council, 14 years later is aiming to conduct a similar building scheme with the Notting Hill Housing Trust and Barnet homes.

The new plans will see the council flats replace with a high density private development, of affordable homes. However the campaign group argue tha the rent in these properties will be raised due to security and service charges.

In a statement issued at the start of the occupation, the group, called Fight for the Aylesbury, said: "We are tenants, squatters, and other people who care about how our city is being grabbed by the rich, by developers and corrupt politicians, socially cleansed and sold off for profit. This is the same rubbish that we have seen on the nearby Heygate estate, and all across London. We are here to fight for the Aylesbury. We are here to fight for our city. We are here to reclaim the Aylesbury and help bring it back to life."

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