Family laments timing of eviction from Merton estate on its last legs

By Harrison Galliven, Local Democracy Reporter

A single mum-of-four has been evicted from her Merton home, despite her calls for a reprieve from the council on the grounds of her son’s disability and daughter sitting her GCSE exams.

The family have been forced to leave their home on the Eastfields estate due to the ‘imminent’ regeneration of the area. They have lived as council tenants on the estate in Clay Lane for the past seven years.

The mum, who does not want to be named, has been living in temporary accommodation for the past 25 years since her husband left her. As a result, her three youngest children, aged 25, 22, and 16, have lived in temporary accommodation across the capital for their whole lives.

The youngest daughter began her GCSE exams on the day the family were evicted – last Wednesday. The mum believes this disruption has been devastating for her and could have easily been prevented by a delay.

The mum is also the full-time carer for her eldest son, who has severe autism and is non-verbal. She pointed to a broken pane of glass, saying: “He gets angry and shouts any time there’s change. Sometimes he breaks things.”

She said: “I just want to stay here until they can find somewhere permanent. At least let us stay here until her exams finish. Permanence means stability for children.

“I have repeated my needs to them time and time again but they don’t listen. I’m really terrified and just want some more support from Merton council.”

Despite her appeals to the council for a delay and consideration of her situation, the council insisted that no permanent properties were available for her and her family.

Merton council wants to tear down the estate, which is in a poor state. The damp from an upstairs bathroom and has caused the whole family to suffer from chesty coughs.

The council, along with Clarion Homes, has also included the nearby High Path and Ravensbury estates in a £1 billion regeneration project. The family’s eviction by Clarion comes as part of an effort to empty the estate of residents ahead of its eventual demolition.

Earlier this year, council leader Ross Garrod announced that phase one of the regeneration programme had begun and ground had been broken.

Since eviction, the family has accepted an offer of privately rented temporary accommodation in Mitcham but fear the cycle of staying in temporary accommodation will continue.

A council spokesman said:  “We have been working with the mother and her family since summer 2023 to find a new home for them.

We are sorry they did not find any of the six properties offered to them suitable, but we are pleased they have now accepted our offer of temporary accommodation in Mitcham.

“We will continue to work with them to try to find a permanent home.”

Clarion was approached but declined to comment.

Pictured top: Part of the 1970s-built Eastfields estate (Picture: Harrison Galliven)

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Everyone at the South London Press thanks you for your continued support.

Former Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing:


If you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can make a donation which will allow us to continue to bring stories to you, both in print and online. Or please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.