Historic Brighton house left to crumble

First published in News

A community fears a historic building is being left to rot because it is in the wrong part of town.

The vacant Victorian house in Wellington Road is now occupied by squatters and residents fear it has been earmarked for demolition.

They say the house, which was built in 1850 and was home to the man who built the first locomotives in Brighton, is the last Victorian villa in the area and should be safeguarded.

Paul Caddick, 44, of De Montfort Road, said: “This building is a key part of Brighton’s history by its association with the development of the Southern railway.

“Why destroy the city’s heritage just because it is not in Kemp Town or Montpelier?”

Residents are concerned that holes have been made in the roof and the windows have been bricked-up, fuelling speculation that full demolition is the main agenda.

“Why destroy the city’s heritage just because it is not in Kemp Town or Montpelier?”

Paul Caddick

The villa has been earmarked for major development by owners, The Baron Homes Corporation, since it bought the building in 2006.

The council approved plans in 2008 for part-demolition and construction of a new three-storey block of 25 self-contained flats with a drop-in centre.

The three-year time limit for implementation expired in 2011 and agents have applied for an extension which has triggered a further round of public consultation.

The building has been empty since 2004 and is next door to derelict council-owned Ainsworth House, which has also attracted squatters.

A council spokeswoman said: “The council and the police are aware of squatter activity at 18 Wellington Road, which is a private property.

“The landlord is responsible for any legal process to resolve the issue.”

Council leader and ward councillor Bill Randall said the authority had consulted residents about the planning application for 18 Wellington Road, and would consider all comments received by the planning committee before a decision is made.

The council is expected to decide the fate of the villa at a meeting on March 12.

Baron Homes, who manage a portfolio of property for Brighton and Hove City Council, were unavailable for comment.

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Comments (11)

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5:00pm Mon 30 Jan 12

AmboGuy says...

Not more squatters in Wellington Road!!! These people are like cockroaches and need to stop breaking into buildings. I wonder if they'll throw missiles at the police and council like last time when they try to evict them.
Not more squatters in Wellington Road!!! These people are like cockroaches and need to stop breaking into buildings. I wonder if they'll throw missiles at the police and council like last time when they try to evict them. AmboGuy
  • Score: 0

6:29pm Mon 30 Jan 12

Bluebonnet says...

Thankfully squatting is still alive and well despite the states attempts to crush it and drive homeless people back onto the streets. Because of greedy landlords and amoral/immoral agencies, along with a clear shortage of housing there is sometimes no alternative. In a few months my family and I will lose our home due to the cruel drop in housing benefit and though I desperately hope we'll find somewhere we can afford the chances look very poor as I'm sure they do for many many people at the moment. If squatting is the alternative to sleeping on the streets (the council just will not be able to house the number of people losing homes at the moment) then that is what we will be forced to do. I can promise now that if anyone tries to push us out onto the streets I will throw anything I can find at them at the very least. I've been homeless before and it is awful and I dread it happening again now that I have a family. And don't think this won't happen to you AmboGuy, no matter what your circumstances are at the moment. Try and find some glimpse of humanity in your bleak soul.
Thankfully squatting is still alive and well despite the states attempts to crush it and drive homeless people back onto the streets. Because of greedy landlords and amoral/immoral agencies, along with a clear shortage of housing there is sometimes no alternative. In a few months my family and I will lose our home due to the cruel drop in housing benefit and though I desperately hope we'll find somewhere we can afford the chances look very poor as I'm sure they do for many many people at the moment. If squatting is the alternative to sleeping on the streets (the council just will not be able to house the number of people losing homes at the moment) then that is what we will be forced to do. I can promise now that if anyone tries to push us out onto the streets I will throw anything I can find at them at the very least. I've been homeless before and it is awful and I dread it happening again now that I have a family. And don't think this won't happen to you AmboGuy, no matter what your circumstances are at the moment. Try and find some glimpse of humanity in your bleak soul. Bluebonnet
  • Score: 0

6:37pm Mon 30 Jan 12

quedula says...

One does occasionally hear of benign squatters who actually look after the property. Unfortunately, not in Brighton.
One does occasionally hear of benign squatters who actually look after the property. Unfortunately, not in Brighton. quedula
  • Score: 0

7:19pm Mon 30 Jan 12

Hove person says...

Like Park House on the Old Shoreham Road! Third application for planning now in! 'Left to rot and earmarked for demolition'. And very convenient for the developers to blame the squatters for the state of disrepair! There were squatters in Park House for 3 months last year the developers were the ones who left it to rot for 4 years!!
Like Park House on the Old Shoreham Road! Third application for planning now in! 'Left to rot and earmarked for demolition'. And very convenient for the developers to blame the squatters for the state of disrepair! There were squatters in Park House for 3 months last year the developers were the ones who left it to rot for 4 years!! Hove person
  • Score: 0

7:56pm Mon 30 Jan 12

Bladesboy Returns says...

Hove person wrote:
Like Park House on the Old Shoreham Road! Third application for planning now in! 'Left to rot and earmarked for demolition'. And very convenient for the developers to blame the squatters for the state of disrepair! There were squatters in Park House for 3 months last year the developers were the ones who left it to rot for 4 years!!
Is it those unwelcome occupy people who are causing a nuisance yet again?

Perhaps it would be better to demolish vacant property than have those sorts making life a misery for the good people who live in the area.
[quote][p][bold]Hove person[/bold] wrote: Like Park House on the Old Shoreham Road! Third application for planning now in! 'Left to rot and earmarked for demolition'. And very convenient for the developers to blame the squatters for the state of disrepair! There were squatters in Park House for 3 months last year the developers were the ones who left it to rot for 4 years!![/p][/quote]Is it those unwelcome occupy people who are causing a nuisance yet again? Perhaps it would be better to demolish vacant property than have those sorts making life a misery for the good people who live in the area. Bladesboy Returns
  • Score: 0

9:51pm Mon 30 Jan 12

AmboGuy says...

Bluebonnet wrote:
Thankfully squatting is still alive and well despite the states attempts to crush it and drive homeless people back onto the streets. Because of greedy landlords and amoral/immoral agencies, along with a clear shortage of housing there is sometimes no alternative. In a few months my family and I will lose our home due to the cruel drop in housing benefit and though I desperately hope we'll find somewhere we can afford the chances look very poor as I'm sure they do for many many people at the moment. If squatting is the alternative to sleeping on the streets (the council just will not be able to house the number of people losing homes at the moment) then that is what we will be forced to do. I can promise now that if anyone tries to push us out onto the streets I will throw anything I can find at them at the very least. I've been homeless before and it is awful and I dread it happening again now that I have a family. And don't think this won't happen to you AmboGuy, no matter what your circumstances are at the moment. Try and find some glimpse of humanity in your bleak soul.
Nothing bleak about my soul mate. I guess I just work hard and pay my way in life. I've lived in a grotty little flat before but I never thought of breaking the law if I didn't get my way. I worked hard and never claimed benefits.
Your comment gives more away about your view on life than you'd like.
[quote][p][bold]Bluebonnet[/bold] wrote: Thankfully squatting is still alive and well despite the states attempts to crush it and drive homeless people back onto the streets. Because of greedy landlords and amoral/immoral agencies, along with a clear shortage of housing there is sometimes no alternative. In a few months my family and I will lose our home due to the cruel drop in housing benefit and though I desperately hope we'll find somewhere we can afford the chances look very poor as I'm sure they do for many many people at the moment. If squatting is the alternative to sleeping on the streets (the council just will not be able to house the number of people losing homes at the moment) then that is what we will be forced to do. I can promise now that if anyone tries to push us out onto the streets I will throw anything I can find at them at the very least. I've been homeless before and it is awful and I dread it happening again now that I have a family. And don't think this won't happen to you AmboGuy, no matter what your circumstances are at the moment. Try and find some glimpse of humanity in your bleak soul.[/p][/quote]Nothing bleak about my soul mate. I guess I just work hard and pay my way in life. I've lived in a grotty little flat before but I never thought of breaking the law if I didn't get my way. I worked hard and never claimed benefits. Your comment gives more away about your view on life than you'd like. AmboGuy
  • Score: 0

9:55am Tue 31 Jan 12

Dirk Gently says...

Bladesboy Returns wrote:
Hove person wrote:
Like Park House on the Old Shoreham Road! Third application for planning now in! 'Left to rot and earmarked for demolition'. And very convenient for the developers to blame the squatters for the state of disrepair! There were squatters in Park House for 3 months last year the developers were the ones who left it to rot for 4 years!!
Is it those unwelcome occupy people who are causing a nuisance yet again?

Perhaps it would be better to demolish vacant property than have those sorts making life a misery for the good people who live in the area.
Bladesboy Returns wrote:
Is it those unwelcome occupy people who are causing a nuisance yet again?

Whatever happened to Occupy, anyway? I remember one poster here assuring us that they'd be back with a vengeance in the new year, but they don't seem to have had much impact so far.
[quote][p][bold]Bladesboy Returns[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Hove person[/bold] wrote: Like Park House on the Old Shoreham Road! Third application for planning now in! 'Left to rot and earmarked for demolition'. And very convenient for the developers to blame the squatters for the state of disrepair! There were squatters in Park House for 3 months last year the developers were the ones who left it to rot for 4 years!![/p][/quote]Is it those unwelcome occupy people who are causing a nuisance yet again? Perhaps it would be better to demolish vacant property than have those sorts making life a misery for the good people who live in the area.[/p][/quote][quote][p][bold]Bladesboy Returns[/bold] wrote: Is it those unwelcome occupy people who are causing a nuisance yet again?[/p][/quote] Whatever happened to Occupy, anyway? I remember one poster here assuring us that they'd be back with a vengeance in the new year, but they don't seem to have had much impact so far. Dirk Gently
  • Score: 0

10:39am Tue 31 Jan 12

khbrighton says...

@ quedula - possibily the reason you dont hear of squatters in brighton that look after the properties is because we are still in them and have not been evicted, our neighbours were very happy when we moved in and stopped the house from getting into a worse state of disrepair, they say that we have increased the value of there properties and stopped them worrying about junkies moving in. When i first started squatting i did so because i did not want to go onto benefits - there was no way I couldve afforded to rent in brighton even though I have always worked, I had dogs too which was a big stumbling block to renting, I know a lot of people in brighton that are long term squatters and all of them work and squat because they do not want to be claiming housing benefit, just think about this - rather than letting these houses go derelict which causes a lot of problems for the neighbours and rather than people claiming housing benefit is it not better to squat the lot?
@ quedula - possibily the reason you dont hear of squatters in brighton that look after the properties is because we are still in them and have not been evicted, our neighbours were very happy when we moved in and stopped the house from getting into a worse state of disrepair, they say that we have increased the value of there properties and stopped them worrying about junkies moving in. When i first started squatting i did so because i did not want to go onto benefits - there was no way I couldve afforded to rent in brighton even though I have always worked, I had dogs too which was a big stumbling block to renting, I know a lot of people in brighton that are long term squatters and all of them work and squat because they do not want to be claiming housing benefit, just think about this - rather than letting these houses go derelict which causes a lot of problems for the neighbours and rather than people claiming housing benefit is it not better to squat the lot? khbrighton
  • Score: 0

12:08pm Tue 31 Jan 12

Crystal Ball says...

AmboGuy wrote:
Bluebonnet wrote:
Thankfully squatting is still alive and well despite the states attempts to crush it and drive homeless people back onto the streets. Because of greedy landlords and amoral/immoral agencies, along with a clear shortage of housing there is sometimes no alternative. In a few months my family and I will lose our home due to the cruel drop in housing benefit and though I desperately hope we'll find somewhere we can afford the chances look very poor as I'm sure they do for many many people at the moment. If squatting is the alternative to sleeping on the streets (the council just will not be able to house the number of people losing homes at the moment) then that is what we will be forced to do. I can promise now that if anyone tries to push us out onto the streets I will throw anything I can find at them at the very least. I've been homeless before and it is awful and I dread it happening again now that I have a family. And don't think this won't happen to you AmboGuy, no matter what your circumstances are at the moment. Try and find some glimpse of humanity in your bleak soul.
Nothing bleak about my soul mate. I guess I just work hard and pay my way in life. I've lived in a grotty little flat before but I never thought of breaking the law if I didn't get my way. I worked hard and never claimed benefits.
Your comment gives more away about your view on life than you'd like.
Well said Sir.
[quote][p][bold]AmboGuy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Bluebonnet[/bold] wrote: Thankfully squatting is still alive and well despite the states attempts to crush it and drive homeless people back onto the streets. Because of greedy landlords and amoral/immoral agencies, along with a clear shortage of housing there is sometimes no alternative. In a few months my family and I will lose our home due to the cruel drop in housing benefit and though I desperately hope we'll find somewhere we can afford the chances look very poor as I'm sure they do for many many people at the moment. If squatting is the alternative to sleeping on the streets (the council just will not be able to house the number of people losing homes at the moment) then that is what we will be forced to do. I can promise now that if anyone tries to push us out onto the streets I will throw anything I can find at them at the very least. I've been homeless before and it is awful and I dread it happening again now that I have a family. And don't think this won't happen to you AmboGuy, no matter what your circumstances are at the moment. Try and find some glimpse of humanity in your bleak soul.[/p][/quote]Nothing bleak about my soul mate. I guess I just work hard and pay my way in life. I've lived in a grotty little flat before but I never thought of breaking the law if I didn't get my way. I worked hard and never claimed benefits. Your comment gives more away about your view on life than you'd like.[/p][/quote]Well said Sir. Crystal Ball
  • Score: 0

2:34pm Tue 31 Jan 12

PorkBoat says...

If this is the building I'm thinking of, I could've guessed it was earmarked for demolition in 2009, by the fact that there were various machines...erm...dem
olishing it! Well done Argus, keeping up with what's happening as usual I see.
If this is the building I'm thinking of, I could've guessed it was earmarked for demolition in 2009, by the fact that there were various machines...erm...dem olishing it! Well done Argus, keeping up with what's happening as usual I see. PorkBoat
  • Score: 0

10:15pm Wed 1 Feb 12

AmboGuy says...

khbrighton wrote:
@ quedula - possibily the reason you dont hear of squatters in brighton that look after the properties is because we are still in them and have not been evicted, our neighbours were very happy when we moved in and stopped the house from getting into a worse state of disrepair, they say that we have increased the value of there properties and stopped them worrying about junkies moving in. When i first started squatting i did so because i did not want to go onto benefits - there was no way I couldve afforded to rent in brighton even though I have always worked, I had dogs too which was a big stumbling block to renting, I know a lot of people in brighton that are long term squatters and all of them work and squat because they do not want to be claiming housing benefit, just think about this - rather than letting these houses go derelict which causes a lot of problems for the neighbours and rather than people claiming housing benefit is it not better to squat the lot?
Jesus christ how long will these people keep peddling the 'we're improving the property' lie??? - come on do you really think anyone believes that? Yeah I'm sure the neighbours were thrilled when you broke into an empty property to 'improve' it.
[quote][p][bold]khbrighton[/bold] wrote: @ quedula - possibily the reason you dont hear of squatters in brighton that look after the properties is because we are still in them and have not been evicted, our neighbours were very happy when we moved in and stopped the house from getting into a worse state of disrepair, they say that we have increased the value of there properties and stopped them worrying about junkies moving in. When i first started squatting i did so because i did not want to go onto benefits - there was no way I couldve afforded to rent in brighton even though I have always worked, I had dogs too which was a big stumbling block to renting, I know a lot of people in brighton that are long term squatters and all of them work and squat because they do not want to be claiming housing benefit, just think about this - rather than letting these houses go derelict which causes a lot of problems for the neighbours and rather than people claiming housing benefit is it not better to squat the lot?[/p][/quote]Jesus christ how long will these people keep peddling the 'we're improving the property' lie??? - come on do you really think anyone believes that? Yeah I'm sure the neighbours were thrilled when you broke into an empty property to 'improve' it. AmboGuy
  • Score: 0

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