Stratford Carpenters Estate residents to ‘reach for the heavens’
16:00 22 April 2012
Carpenters Estate tenants have vowed to continue their fight to be heard as the University College London edges closer to making a decision on whether to replace their homes with a new campus.
Unhappy residents marched in Stratford to raise awareness of what they believe is the enforced gentrification of their neighbourhood as the Olympic Games looms.
More than 100 people either watched or took part in the ‘tour’, which was staged to highlight the split between the existing Stratford and the town that will exist once Newham Council has completed its regeneration of the area.
The UCL signed a six-month agreement in November to devise proposals for a new campus.
It has held a series of drop-in sessions to show its proposals to remaining Carpenters Estate tenants.
Joseph Alexander, vice chairman of the Carpenters Against Regeneration Plans (CARP), said the march was a good way of meeting other like-minded campaigners.
He said: “We have got to aim for the heavens and even if we don’t at least we would have reached the stars.
“If we can get the council to do something that they should have done throughout the whole process then it would be a success.
“They should have involved us from the start so that the community can still exist here in some form. It’s been done in other places and it can be done here.”
The BBC and Al-Jazeera were earlier this month granted planning permission to turn the upper floors and roof of Lund Point and Dennison Point into studios for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Planning decisions in the Carpenters Estate neighbourhood will come under the control of the London Legacy Development Corporation in the autumn.
However, Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales has a place on the board of the newly-formed body.
A Newham Council spokesman said residents have been kept informed about any decisions which have been made regarding their homes.
“We will continue to engage with them throughout the process and take into account any concerns they may have,” he added.
The UCL were unable to comment before the Recorder went to press.