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Special fundraising concert of Dispossession doc for Grenfell Tower residents

Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle

Story by Jack Foley

WITH recent events now placing social housing high on the political agenda, the makers of Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle (2017) are holding a special fund-raising for Grenfell Tower residents at Notting Hill’s Pictuehouse Gate Cinema on Tuesday, July 11, 2017.

All proceeds from the screening will be donated to Grenfell via the London Community Foundation Grenfell Tower Appeal. A discussion with director Paul Sng will follow the screening.

Sng, who himself was raised on a council housing estate, commented: “The horror of what happened at Grenfell Tower has made people aware of how important it is to listen to council tenants and appreciate the value and purpose of social housing.

“I hope Dispossession will help to raise more awareness of how some local authorities are neglecting their housing stock and encourage councils to treat their tenants with greater care and respect.”

With the prospect of significant changes in council housing policy resulting from the passing of the Housing and Planning Act in 2016, Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle highlights the plight of long-term tenants who are fighting not just to keep their homes but also to preserve their tight-knit communities from the eroding effects of gentrification and social cleansing.

Following the dramatic impact of Ken Loach’s I, Daniel Blake, the film raises crucially important issues about how to tackle the acute problem of providing homes for the 1.4 million people on council housing waiting lists and an estimated quarter of a million homeless people in Britain.

The documentary recounts the neglect, demolition and subsequent regeneration of a number of council estates in London – including the Aylesbury Estate in Southwark and Balfron Tower in Tower Hamlets – as well as in Glasgow and Nottingham that reflect wider national trends across the UK, examining the human cost of the housing crisis.

There are interviews with Caroline Lucas, Danny Dorling, Lisa McKenzie, Nicola Sturgeon, Peter Hitchens and leading figures from the housing industry.

The emotional heart of the film remains the residents themselves determined to preserve their communities, people who know the difference between a house and a home, and who believe that housing is a human right, not an expensive luxury.

Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle raises important issues of concern for the future of anyone living in cities in Britain and across the world.

Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle is produced by Velvet Joy Productions.

Booking information for Gate Picturehouse Cinema

Box office: 0871 902 573

The film is currently showing in UK cities nationwide, each accompanied by a post-screening discussion.

The latest London Q&A screenings include…

Mon 10 Jul – Arthouse, Crouch End
Tue 11 Jul – The Gate Picturehouse, Notting Hill
Mon 24 Jul – The Ritzy, Brixton
Mon 25 Jul – Greenwich Picturehouse
Thu 27 Jul – Curzon Soho (in association with Bird’s Eye View)
Fri 04 Aug to Thu 10 Aug – Picturehouse Central

Dispossession: The Social Housing Swindle is screening at selected cinemas nationwide from June 16. Many of the screenings are accompanied by a panel of experts discussing man of the issues raised in the film.