Gascoigne demolition gets support

RESIDENTS of Barking s notorious Gascoigne Estate say council plans to demolish hundreds of homes on the site are long overdue. Householders claim that many buildings on the estate, especially the tower blocks, are so run-down they are almost inhabitable.

RESIDENTS of Barking's notorious Gascoigne Estate say council plans to demolish hundreds of homes on the site are long overdue.

Householders claim that many buildings on the estate, especially the tower blocks, are so run-down they are almost inhabitable.

But some residents remain sceptical over the council's belief that a make-over can cut the area's high levels of crime.

Plans to raze hundreds of homes to the ground during a fifteen-year regeneration project were revealed last month.


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New flats, of different types and sizes, would be built in their place. If funding is secured, work would begin within two years, starting at the southern end of the estate.

Tower block resident Lavdijee Dauti welcomed the news, saying: "I think it's a good idea. The buildings are too old and run-down. The communal areas are dirty and the lifts are often broken."

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"They should have been knocked down a long time ago."

Pensioner Eileen Hammon, 67, who has lived in one of the flats for 21 years, said: "They've been talking about knocking them down for years. It's long overdue."

But Mrs Hammon said she didn't believe building new homes would cut crime.

"The people who are causing the problems will still be here" she said, adding:

"If they knock my building down it would give me an excuse to get off the estate. I wouldn't come back."

Mother-of-three Nancy Kadidi, 28, disagreed: "This estate is the perfect place for criminals because there are so many places to hide. If they re-designed the area, they could get rid of all the hiding spots, which would make the place feel safer."

Mrs Kadidi said she would come back to the estate if offered 'a nice, new flat.'

"I like living here because it has everything you need and is a short walk away from the town centre."

Tina Haynes, who lives in one of the low-rise buildings, said she supported the make-over but added: "The tower blocks need to go, but I don't think regenerating the place will solve the problems, especially the crime.

"I hope they prove me wrong, because it would be great to walk around the estate and not look over my shoulder all the time.

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