A message to the tenants and leaseholders of 241-471 Wendover, Foxcote, Winslow, Padbury & Ravenstone, and those remaining in Arklow, Bradenham, Chartridge, Chiltern, 300 – 313 Missenden
Defend your home – your moral right
You don’t have to move – sit tight
Be calm. Be still. No need to fight
To Defend our Homes with all our might.
(and to Defend Council Housing)
There were about 2700 dwellings on the Aylesbury. 8500 people who appreciated having an affordable home close to central London, who needed SOMEWHERE to live.
Still thousands live on the Aylesbury who do not want to see the eradication of social housing – of COUNCIL housing – in their neighbourhood. (And more ‘temporary tenants’ are being moved in…. )
London and Quadrant have built new homes in the South West Corner, and will be building in the North West – ‘Harvard Gardens’. BUT NOT FOR US. Most are for private sale. The housing association homes for ‘social renting’ can only accomodate a small fraction of the Aylesbury tenants who having to ‘HOME-SEARCH’. Most prospective tenants, however, cannot afford these homes: rent and service charges add up to an average of £40 PER WEEK more than on the Aylesbury. And rents and service charges on any new development are likely to be as high, if not higher.
At the moment the L&Q rents (and the NHHT social housing) are set as ‘target rents. Pressure is on Housing Associations (Councils are better placed to resist) to charge even higher rents – so called ‘affordable rents’ (see our ‘Jargon busting’ page)
The HCA are saying
“it is expected that providers utilise the flexibility to charge rents of up to 80% of market rents to maximise financial capacity”
We are worried that this is what will apply on the Wolverton site (Harvard Gardens). And probably too in the NHHT rebuild on the rest of the Aylesbury. The Harvard Gardens legal agreement with the Council refers to the HCA guidelines, and makes no reference to the National Rent Regime. This is the regulatory framework which decides the level of social rents based – among other things – on the average level of income.
And here are some examples of current rents from NHHT’s website:
That’s roughly double current Council rents on the Aylesbury…
AND ANYWAY -
The pace of “social rented” new build
(if, and that’s a big if, it were genuinely affordable)
is not keeping up with housing need.
In particular there is a current shortage of 3/4/5 bedroom homes in Southwark.
Which will get worse as the many spacious Aylesbury maisonettes go.
We don’t believe that there is enough good quality housing to rehouse us.
Both tenants and leaseholders, if you are one of the hundreds of residents that the council is attempting to rehouse, we have an urgent message for you
Do not accept any reduction of your living standards
and be wary of promises and hidden charges.
(e.g. service charges, heating, water metering…)
If you are a Tenant – Network with us to find out what is happening. Network with us to establish and maintain a good standard of repairs and services (heating, hot water, working lifts, speedy leak repairs and pest control). Let us know what is happening in your block, and don’t be fobbed off with excuses blaming the pipework and the fabric of the building for prolonged delays. Expect nothing less than 100% consicientious and concern from contractors carrying out essential work and from Housing Officers supervising them. Record and report any instances where this is not happening, both to the Council, and to us. For example, we want to know more about the pest situation on 1-240 Wendover. We all know that loose rubbish is a magnet for vermin, even if it is, allegedly, collected every day (still leaving hours of rodent feasting time). So why on earth have the rubbish cupboards on these Wendover corridors been sealed off? Who sanctioned this? And what is your T&RA doing about this?
Landlords have certain legal obligations to their tenants, and when Southwark fail to provide services we pay for, we are entitled to claim compensation. There is a multi-million pound budget assigned for repairs and ‘planned preventative maintenance’.
Together we are strong, and can hold Southwark accountable.
We are interested to network with both tenants and leaseholders from the Aylesbury – both have many interests in common.
Contact us here.
It is in the interests of all residents on the Aylesbury that there needs to be a radical re-appraisal of the value of where we live. (Were you aware that there was a recent NDC financed £24000 PR press campaign yet again branding us “The Estate from Hell”) ( October 2008, in the Times and the Independent )
Our lived experience of crime on the Estate does not match the myth – and this is borne out by the statistics. We need to counter these pernicious negative stereotypes. By listing and emphasising the many positive features of our homes that we now enjoy, and celebrating our diverse community, we strengthen our bargaining position. We are not going to be bullied into giving up good sound insulation, light, views and space because of exterior neglect and delays in re-housing growing families due to current housing scarcity. So here is a place for showing some images of Aylesbury from the inside. And that’s where, when home, we spend our time.
Once there was a 2 bed show-home. An enticing sample of future life in the Southwest Corner? Albany Place, Hitard Court, Red Lion Row, London SE17 has now been built, and houses just a few previous Aylesbury residents. Just like the show-home, the floor area does not rival existing Aylesbury 2 bed flats. The developers boasted that the rooms were as spacious, but corridors were narrower, and there was considerably less storage space. We complained about the show-home that there was a lack of separate loo and washing facilities, if, as the developers asserted, these two bedroom flats are considered suitable for families of four. So now some two-bedroom flats at Hitard Court have two bathrooms?!? At the expense of room for living and sleeping.
We know that there are many house-proud and artistic residents on the Aylesbury who have done fantastic things with their homes, their gardens and balconies.
So help us with our PR – please send us your pictures of rooms in your home to rival the London and Quadrant hype…
And send us your Aylesbury pictures of proper homes for families of four or more – 3 or more bedrooms…
And join with us in enterprises to make the most of our large communal spaces…
which will be in short supply on any new development….
- IT systems analysts
- ex-professional boxers
- MA students
- hospital workers
- professional artists