'Get us out of here': Protest at possible rehousing delay of another decade
- Credit: Mike Brooke
Families put banners up in protest at being “pushed to the back of the queue” to get new homes while other streets in Poplar are redeveloped.
The remaining families in Jura House, built in the 1950s and set to be pulled down in 2011, say they have been told the demolition of their properties and subsequent regeneration will not happen for another 10 years in the last phase of the Aberfeldy housing regeneration.
“That means we’re in limbo for 20 years,” protest organiser Alaina Morshead told the East London Advertiser.
"It is unfair to make us live next door to a building site until the last phase comes around.”
Giant banners went up on Saturday (June 5) on a four-storey block in Aberfeldy Street, while families on the ground floor had placards in each front garden asking: "Why the delay?”
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Pensioner Gina Smith said: “My family moved in here when I was a little girl — I’m now an old lady. I don’t want to come out in a box by the time they get the regeneration finished.”
The residents sent a petition to Poplar Harca housing organisation, which manages the block, to say it is in disrepair with severe damp, mould, cracks in the walls and ceilings, and with kitchens and bathrooms in a bad condition.
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“The outside is just as bad,” the petition adds. “It’s the most unsightly and rundown building in this whole area. We feel like we are the forgotten residents of Aberfeldy.”
Some 30 children live in Jura House, most of them having grown up all their lives with their families on “decamp status”, ready to move out.
The Advertiser put the families’ views to Poplar Harca about delays to “decamping" until as late as 2031.
Its spokesperson said: “We agree that the building is in a poor condition and understand the desire to move as soon as possible and are looking seriously at all options for relocating to new homes.
"The Aberfeldy Masterplan is complex and a slow process. We recognise people's impatience and are working as fast as we can and hope to have some positive news for Jura House residents very soon.”