Please join TUSH housing co-op this Wednesday evening to protest against TH Council’s decision to evict them from their Bow home of 17-years.
The council has decided it wants to kick out the three friends – Angelus, John and Mike – and spend £150,000 doing it up before renting it out – and risk losing it to right-to-buy or selling it on.
Octogenarian Angelus has lived in the Bruce Road co-op for 30-years and relies on his friends for support and friendship. The council say he should be in sheltered housing. Angelus says it will be like being sent to prison to wait to die.
John, who grew up in the area, has lived at the property for 17-years with his dogs and apart from being split up from his friends will be forced to give up his beloved dog Bambi as both private accommodation and housing associations won’t accept pets.
Mike, who has also lived in Bruce Road for many years with his pet dog Polo, has already been forced out of one former TUSH property when the council tricked him into moving out to do some work under the belief he could move back. The council deemed the best use of the property – along with a number others – would be to let it sit empty for nearly five years rather than let people move back in.
The council proposes they all move into one bedroom homes, which is odd given the shortage of housing and the inefficient use of stock that would be. Meanwhile the council is proposing wasting £150,000 on doing the property up despite its shortage of cash and John having spent years renovating and maintaining the property, which the friends are all happy to live in as it is.
The TUSH house sharing co-op was set up 35-years ago when the council had neither the money or the will to renovate seven derelict properties. The original members began renovating and maintaining them and lived there and getting involved in community work and campaigns. The council eventually gave them licenses to live there.
The arrangement meant the council had no costs in looking after the properties for decades. We only have to look at Robin Hood Gardens and Balfron Tower to see how good the council is at taking care of its stock.
It now seems the council wants to cash in on other people’s hard work by either selling them on or possibly letting them out to families. But they are a family in the most important sense of the word: taking care and looking out for each other. It seems the council is too willing to dismiss older single people as being somehow undeserving.
So please join them this Wednesday outside the Town Hall before the monthly full council meeting where their petition will be presented to the chamber and discussed.
6-7pm, Weds, 22nd July, Tower Hamlets Town Hall, Mulberry Place, E14 2BG
How to get there: East India DLR or buses: 15, 108, 277, D6, D7, D8
Visit the last TUSH co-op home on Bruce Road
Angelus, Mike and John will be opening up their door during the day on Wednesday for supporters to come and see their co-op home for themselves and find out more about the history of the co-op and why their way of living is a benefit and not a burden.
Their welcoming people between 12 and 5pm. Enjoy a cup of tea or a glass of juice and let John give you a tour of the garden where he grows food and is nurturing wildlife.