One morning a solicitor rang our office. He had an urgent problem with squatters in an office block. His client, a property company, was redeveloping part of a multi-storey office block in Brighton which had squatters.
The tenants left at 10pm the previous evening, and by the next morning squatters had moved in and barricaded the doors. The property company had sent their regular bailiffs to have a look at the situation, and they had reported that there was nothing they could do as a court order was required.
The property company needed the squatters removed quickly to minimise the damage to the premises, and had rang the solicitor about gaining a court order. The solicitor rang Quality Bailiffs. Is there anything we could do?
We attended the office block to undertake a risk assessment and identify options for removing the squatters. The options were discussed with the property company and we were instructed to undertake a common law eviction. Under common law a court order is not required and the eviction can be undertaken quickly.
The chosen approach was to enter via an open second floor window which was in a separate part of the building. As no force was used to gain entry no court action was required, and a common law eviction could be carried out.
A cherry picker was brought to the site and a small team was inserted into the building via the window. This entry was not seen by the squatters and was unopposed. The bailiffs then simply opened the internal doors and gained possession of the building. External fire doors were then opened from the inside letting our full team into the building.
The squatters were quickly removed from the building using reasonable force. A security team was then put in place to prevent any re-occupation by the squatters.
This eviction of squatters in Brighton was a success and completed the same day. As the squatters had been removed quickly there was next to no damage to the building.
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