Defiant Carnegie Library Occupiers now under siege

PRESS RELEASE

1st April 2016

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Defiant Carnegie Library Occupiers now under siege

Lambeth Council is now trying to escalate the conflict it has itself created around the peaceful, good humoured occupation of Carnegie Library, Herne Hill. Extra security guards under the instruction of Lambeth Council, with police, have been posted outside since lunchtime.

The security guards have now been instructed by the council to prevent anyone entering or re-entering the building. Around 80 people including 10 small children are inside the library. If they leave, they cannot return. They are effectively under siege.

Meanwhile, a a large crowd of local people, angry with the Council, is growing outside, Many of them had come for a public meeting, but found themselves excluded.

The. council is also seeking a court order to evict the occupiers but this cannot be served until Monday at the earliest. It has shown no interest in discussing campaigners’ concerns, emailed to them yesterday.

The occupation will continue over the weekend.

“This behaviour is shameful. Surely not all Labour councillors condone these actions” Louise Martin, local resident.

The Library was condemned to close from today to be converted into a gym, alongside nearby Minet Library. Total cost of the gyms: £3m to install, plus £1m to shore up running expenses.

Residents overwhelmingly oppose the destruction of their much used local libraries in favour of unwanted gyms.

Dr Martin Heath, one of the campaigners stated that: “There is a need for a full investigation of Lambeth’s financial competence and also of its strange arrangements with Greenwich Leisure Limited.”

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