Residents of an historic Brixton Housing Co-operative are this morning waiting to hear if they will be evicted.
A judge at Lambeth County Court, Kennington, is hearing the application by Lambeth Council to gain possession of 16 flats in the building.
The council is also seeking a draconian injunction against the residents, some of whom have lived in the flats for decades.
Last month a judge at Lambeth County Court refused to hear an immediate injunction application made by Lambeth’s lawyers, telling them he was not prepared to “make possession orders by the back door”. The authority, which owns the freehold for the building, claims a fire inspection found the Victorian block poses and intolerable threat to life.
An injunction is one of the most draconian types of order you can seek and a judge will only grant it in very serious cases. If the injunction had been granted, it is possible that residents may have been arrested if they entered the building.
Speaking last month, Cllr Rachel Heywood said: “The situation with Carlton mansions has moved extremely rapidly and with less time for discussion and the exploration of alternative options than I, personally, would have wished for.”
“In fact my preference is that we continue to work productively with CMHC to develop a good solution for the redevelopment of Somerleyton rd which includes CMHC. There is no reason why we cannot continue to do this, but nor can we ignore the gravity of the findings of the fire risk assessment. This has placed an urgent duty upon the council to vacate the building because of “intolerable” levels of risk.”