Brixton Carlton Mansions housing co-op faces court meeting – please give them your help and support – urgent!

Carlton Mansions needs your help and support - urgent!

The council appears to be rushing through attempts to evict one of Brixton’s longest-serving housing co-ops, with residents suddenly being requested  to attend a court meeting tomorrow morning to decide their future.
[Background: Brixton’s Carlton Mansions housing co-op fights for its future]

Carlton Mansions Co-Op fights for their future as doubts are cast on just how 'co-operative' Lambeth Council really is

Carlton Mansions say that they have had no time to prepare for this court appearance and with the council maintaining limited communication over this matter, it appears that they may be conspiring to evict residents in double-quick time.

Residents have urged locals to email their concerns about this latest development to their councillors, and posters on the urban75 bulletin boards have offered two template letters to help you get started:

Example #1:

Dear [councillor]

It has come to my attention that the council intends to evict residents from the Carlton Mansions co-op on Coldharbour Lane, SW9 over a fire assessment which I understand they are disputing.

Lambeth Council has publicly pledged to help sustain “resilient communities,” so it deeply concerns me that this eviction appears to be in the process of being rushed through.

The Carlton Mansions co-op is one of the longest serving communities in the area, and Brixton would the worse off for their removal.

Lambeth Council has proclaimed itself as a co-operative council so I’m a little confused why you should appear so keen to evict the kind of co-operative housing that embodies the very values you’re trying to embrace.

Yours

Example #2:

Dear [councillor],

I’m writing to express my grave concerns about the ongoing situation with regard to the residents of the Carlton Mansions co-operative.

As a local resident, I’m appalled to see Lambeth Council seemingly acting in an underhand way, while attempting to speed up the eviction of these tenants, who have already accepted that they will be moved on nearer the time of the development. The fire assessment certainly seems to have come at a convenient time for LC – are you prepared for the premises to be independently assessed?

Increasingly it appears that LC are not taking the needs of long-term residents seriously enough – and resorting to bullying tactics where deemed necessary.

By scheduling snap-meetings you are not allowing the tenants adequate time to prepare their case – which further reinforces my belief that you do not have their best interests at heart.

I and many other local residents I know are increasingly disillusioned with the way LC conducts its affairs – it would appear it’s business first, residents second – and that is no way for a council to conduct itself.

Yours sincerely

Councillor contact details:

probbins@lambeth.gov.uk
– Pete Robbins Cabinet member for housing
rheywood@lambeth.gov.uk
– Rachel Heywood councillor for coldharbour ward
mparr1@lambeth.gov.uk
– Matt Parr councillor for coldharbour ward
DAnyanwu@lambeth.gov.uk
– Donatus Anyanwu councillor for coldharbour ward

More here: http://www.lambeth.gov.uk/moderngov/mgMemberIndex.aspx?bcr=1

More info:

Feature: Brixton’s Carlton Mansions housing co-op fights for its future

Discuss this: 

Join the lively discussion on the urban75 forums: Carlton Mansions co-op in Brixton comes under pressure

Here’s some recent comments:

Carlton Mansions housing co-operative is a vibrant community, which has had no opportunity to get independent advice or to prepare a case. It does indeed seem strange that a housing co-operative with an excellent safety record, that has played an active role in and with the local community for decades housing local people, is facing this summary guillotine.

In the days of the 1980s when Brixton was not seen as such a salubrious vicinity, and during the uprisings, it is telling that the building was never once touched; not being seen as an ‘enemy’ to the people of Brixton.

There is an irony to this. The building used to have an extra door at one side, and at the other an emergency exit wide enough to allow a truck to pass through. Why is access to this now denied? – Fenian

It’s like being in a Kafka nightmare.

The Council is causing more distress by doing this than leaving us here until the building is needed for the Somerleyton project.

We have already told Council that we would leave when it was needed for the redevelopment of Somerleyton road.

The court papers do not acknowledge that we are a Coop. Nor do they acknowledge that Coop have history of participating in Council consultations over the years. ie Brixton Masterplan, Brixton SPD and recent consultation on the Somerleyton road project. Which the Council have been saying is being done in consultation with the community. As one of my Ward Cllrs said the Council is doing things differently in involving the local community in this project. – Gramsci