[Hpn] Squatters move into former pub

William Charles Tinker wtinker@metrocast.net
Thu, 12 Aug 2004 11:06:11 -0400


www.icSouthlondon.com

Squatters move in to former pub
By Vicky Wilks, Streatham Post

SQUATTERS have moved into a pub that has been empty for almost two years and
could be demolished.

The group set up home in the former Bricklayers Arms pub in Chapel Road,
West Norwood, two months ago.

Once one of the area's most popular watering holes, the Irish pub was closed
by Punch Brewers 20 months ago.

At the end of last year, the brewery sold the pub to a developer which has
applied to Lambeth council to demolish it and build two five-storey blocks
of flats on the site.

A Lambeth council spokesman said the authority was expecting to make a
decision on whether the site can be used for new housing next week .

Meanwhile in Chapel Road, there has been some positive reaction to the new
residents.

Shopkeeper Neil Patel who runs Neil's in Chapel Road, said he had not had
any trouble from the squatters.

He said: "I have had no problems with these people - they spend money in my
shop."

West Norwood community activist John MacDonald mourned the demise of the
pub.

He said: "It was once one of the best in the area, a big Irish pub with lots
of Irish music and the local Irish community gathered in it.

"It is disappointing that these nice old buildings are firstly left to rot
and then knocked down."



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