“Squats and squatters had almost disappeared. This year we are hearing of case up on case. Apartments in City Centre Manchester have better access security than traditional houses. Even so, we must remain vigilant... read two independent articles and stories about recent cases.” Stephen Bowden
Article: The Estate Agent Today
A Bristol agency has had its windows smashed in by a group of anarchists.
In a post by Act for Freedom, the demonstrators said their vandalism was an expression of rage against all estate agents.
They picked on Maggs & Allen because of their part in trying to evict squatters who have occupied a pair of buildings since April 2010.
It is understood that the buildings’ owners are registered on the Isle of Man and that Maggs & Allen started possession proceedings last November.
The buildings were at the heart of the Bristol riots that rocked the city this April.
Maggs & Allen is a highly reputable firm, with NAEA, RICS, NAVA and Ombudsman memberships.
The post said: “We did this in response to Maggs & Allen's part in the threatened eviction of the Freeshop and the Emporium, two squatted spaces on Stokes Croft. Our solidarity goes out to all people being threatened with eviction, from those in squats to those who can't afford their rent.
“To those who seek to criminalise squatting – a law designed only to protect property, which will make it harder for anyone, squatters or not, to house themselves: let this be an indication that we will resist.
“Our actions last night were an expression of our rage against all estate agents and all others who profit from people's need for shelter.
“For those who profit from inflating rent prices and benefit from rising instability and the increasing lack of control in our lives, we have nothing but rocks and anger.
“We refuse to wait for your bailiffs and intend to take the fight to those who attack us. Our struggle for freedom is one of our own choosing.”
The Act for Freedom campaign against Maggs & Allen comes at a time when campaigners are trying to making squatting an illegal act.
This is a further Article on the subject supplied by Property Drum:
Sweet & Maxwell says that the number of Possession Orders issued in the county courts in London to evict squatters has risen 58% since before the credit crunch. There were 112 Possession Orders issued in London in 2006 rising to 177 in 2010.
Sweet & Maxwell says that this rise in the number of property owners having to resort to the courts to evict squatters is down to a number of factors:
· Rising residential rents in London
· An increase in levels of graduate and youth unemployment
· An increase in the number of vacant properties in central London
· The recent resurgence of lifestyle squatters who regard squatting as a political statement
Interstingly, squatters prefer posh pads, the new data suggests that squatting is more prevalent in urban areas than in suburban areas. There have been high profile squats in Mayfair and the West End and central London’s prime properties are now regularly targeted by a savvy international network of ‘lifestyle squatters’. They often target the homes of London’s super rich whose properties are especially vulnerable because their owners spend significant amounts of time overseas. but squatters are also now targeting the area surrounding trendy Clerkenwell and Shoreditch, which saw a 52% increase in the number of Possession Orders issued from 50 in 2009 to 76 in 2010.
The statistics from the Clerkenwell and Shoreditch county court shows that this area accounted for a massive 43% of the total number of possession orders issued in London during 2010. By contrast, suburban Bromley accounted for just 3% of the total number of Possession Orders in 2010.
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