Friday, 28 May 2010

Squatters Rights

I've turned into a NIMBY and I don't like it!  Squatters have taken over a run down house in my usually pretty, quiet road.  I'm fairly sure that it was used by some hardcore drug users previously so I guess squatters are a step up from that.

I've seen these squatters coming back from the Co-op with carrier bags full of alcohol and Pot Noodles (probably).  At one point, two of them were asleep on a urine-stained mattress in the front yard.  The upstairs window is kept open with used beer bottles.  There's unfortunately a poor little toddler living there amongst the chaos too I think.

Over the past couple of days, handmade banners have appeared - "Save my Squat", "Too Many Empty Houses in Brighton" blah blah blah and while I sympathise with their situation and agree about the housing situation, I think that if they want a property, they need to take a bit more care of it - you know what I mean, a bit of Cillit Banging, booze bottle recycling, that sort of it.  And maybe respect their neighbours a bit more.

I know what I'm talking about as regards squats you know!  I havn't always been the clean cut lady I am now.  I've stayed in squats (lots of them) - good & bad, and was even going to live in one once.  Good:  A 3 storey Victorian House in Eversholt Street, NW1, with a working bathroom & kitchen on each floor, and electric (provided of course by a friendly fixer).  Bad:  Drug infested hovels in Kennington/Brixton where people came & went, taking everyone's belongings with them.

I don't know if it happens much these days but in the 90s, there were stories all the time of long-term squatters being allowed to keep their squatted properties as the owners had died, given up or gone mad!  I'm positive that this was only because they made these places their own little homes, looked after them and treated them in a way in which anyone would be proud.

Blimey this was a bit serious today.  I might go and have a word with the squatting kids - tidy up or go away!  I really don't want their mess ruining my pretty road.

Tomorrow's blog will hopefully be prettier!

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