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MORE THAN 100,000 people have signed a petition to stop the Duke of Westminster demolishing a block of council flats in central London.
Billionaire duke Hugh Grosvenor owns more land than the Queen and is the richest man aged under 30 in the world.
His property group, Grosvenor, plans to demolish two residential blocks in Belgravia and use the land to build luxury flats and expensive shops dubbed “Cundy Street Quarter.”
He wants to take back the leases on Walden House, which has been used by Westminster Council as social council housing for decades, and the nearby Cundy Street Flats.
Many of the residents on Cundy Street, which has a mixture of market rate and “affordable” housing, say they have lived there for decades.
There are 111 flats in Cundy Street and 40 in Walden House, with eight residents described as disabled.
A petition launched by the Save Cundy Street and Walden House group has garnered over 103,000 signatures.
The residents say: “We are a community, we live among friends and family and now face the possibility of having our community fragmented and destroyed.
“There is nothing wrong with these beautiful buildings — Grosvenor just want to make more money.
“This is simply about putting profit before people.
“This is valuable land, and we are seen as getting in the way of building high-rise luxury investment flats.
“Please help us save this wonderful corner of London and our community.”
Council tenant Liza Begum, who has lived in Walden House all her life, said she fears that her family will be pushed out of the borough.
Cundy Street Flats resident Melanie de Blank has said that the demolition will happen “over our dead body.”
Grosvenor said it has delayed demolition from 2021 to 2023 to give residents more time.
Company director Paul O’Grady said: “Our ambition is to create a new inclusive neighbourhood that meets the needs of residents and businesses today while ensuring that it respects the area’s heritage and will stand the test of time.”
Westminster Council said: “All [tenants] will be offered suitable alternative council accommodation within Westminster.”
Sign the petition: mstar.link/SaveWalden
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