We're being kicked out of our homes in WEEKS – they'll pay us £7k but it's not enough to change our whole lives | The Sun03/04/2023
LOCALS who call a London block of flats home could be kicked out in a matter of weeks.
The women-only complex in Ealing faces demolition after plans were submitted to try and improve the site.
Residents claim the local council have offered them £7,000 to relocate – but they don't want to.
Shobhna Radia, who has lived in her one-bed flat in Brook House for 45 years, told The Sun Online she would rather stay-put than accept the cash.
The 75-year-old said: "I have no family. This is my home and now I don't know where I'll go.
"It's really not good what's happening. It's too much hassle.
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"It seems like they're making money and we're just suffering.
"I hope [the council] can help. I hope someone can help."
What is currently only a five-storey block will be replaced with a 15-storey high rise, if approved.
The flats are managed by Women's Pioneer Housing (WPH), who aim to help women get back on their feet.
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The charity said the homes don't meet their "standards" and would be cheaper to rebuild than do-up.
However, residents have said they haven't been guaranteed a place when the new block is built.
While some have been contacted about registering their interest in other flats, one woman said she's heard nothing.
Florence Akinmulero, 80, said she's had no contact from Ealing Council or WPH.
The pensioner said it would be extremely hard for her to move from what has been her home for 30 years.
She said: "It's hard when I've been here for 30 years. This is my home you know.
"I don't want to go. I like this area it's my home.
"I don't know where we'll go if they knock it down.
"A lot of people have already moved out."
The women pay around £700 in rent for the property – which has a narrow corridor, a small kitchen, one bathroom and one bedroom.
Tracey Downie, Chief Executive of Women’s Pioneer Housing told The Sun every resident will have the chance to move back into Brook House once it's completed.
She said: “Women’s Pioneer Housing was set up over 100 years ago by suffragists to provide affordable housing for single women who are otherwise unable to afford to live in a home of their own, a mission that we fulfil to this day.
"The redevelopment of Brook House is central to this mission, providing larger, warmer and more accessible homes for our existing residents.
"This project will also more than double the number of homes on this site, all of which will be for affordable rent and provide much needed affordable homes for a further 60 single women on low incomes in Ealing.
“For the past two years, we have worked with our residents to ensure they are comfortable with the moving process.
"This has been a challenging process for WPH, unlike larger housing associations, we do not have large amounts of vacant homes to move our residents to.
"Brook House is the only property we own in Ealing so for those wishing to stay in the local area, we have had to find alternative provision.
"This has involved working with the council and other housing associations."
She said they're working to find suitable homes for all residents and have invited them to view at least one new property.
She added: "Every resident has been invited to view at least one potential temporary home, and many have already moved.
“Every one of our existing residents will be given the opportunity to move back into the new Brook House when it is completed.
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"We will spend the next few months working closely with our residents to support them in finding a place to live while construction takes place, after which they can return to their new homes in Acton.”
Ealing Council said: "This application is currently being considered by the council’s planning department."
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