So, I mentioned that we had a squatter problem here at Catrion towers, and they were evicted. The tale can now be fully told.

When we arrived, there were squatters. Mid-May they were evicted by the letting agents. So fine, so hoopy.

They came back.

Not immediatly, but after a couple of weeks they returned for another fortnight and were gone again, since I told Vanderpumps – the letting agents – they were back (…and then told them Vanderpumps were coming), They left, leaving all the windows open.

I phoned Vanderpumps, and said all the windows were open, it was the wettest week this year, and could they send someone with a key to close them? They said they would, they didn’t. What happened? The squatters returned though the window. My suprise was immeasureable, and so I gave up. They are not the Worst upstairs-neighbours++… I’ve ever had, apart from the occasional 3am shouting match all was well. Oh, apart from the assurance that “Whatever happens up there, don’t worry, you’ll be safe”, the point where the bloke stabbed himself in the arm because he was so angry at her (!!!) and stuff. Besides, I sympathise slightly. Both of them have fallen though the cracks in the system. The girl (and this is purely based on talking to her, but I’m reasonably good at noticing when people are lying to me) can’t get beneift (No fixed abode) and certianly can’t summon up the cash for a deposit. They have no idea where to go to fix this, or how to begin. So, while they were no trouble I left them alone, and they left us alone.

This was somewhat modified last weekend when we got back from London to discover all their windows smashed, and complaints from the landlord. Enter Peter.

Peter is the Landlord of the flat next door to theres (This is a semi-detached house, each floor of each house is rented out), and since his tenants are moving out, he wasn’t terribly happy with the idea of having to try to let a house next door to one in the state ours is in. We have absolutly no clout with Vanderpumps at all. We can’t afford to move out, We have another four months left on the contract before we can anyway. Peter is a landlord with several properties. He does have clout. When he says “I’m looking for a new letting agent. Go jump” Vanderpumps say “How high?”. Peter visited us a couple of days ago. I mentioned our landlord and his lack of interest in the place, the squatters, the inability of Vanderpumps to do any of this, and lots of other stuff (I’d spent the day fighting with DHTML. I should have worked out my irritation on someone else. Mostly because I had no idea of our landlords name – I realised later – and for all I knew the landlord of #64 might be ours as well. Fortunatly he wasn’t, really). He said he’d talk to Vanderpumps, though he didn’t have any properties with them.

He did. That was Tuesday. Within two days the entire flat is boarded up (which looks crap, but is better than broken windows) with a large notice on the door saying “Keep Out! 24 Hour Patrol! This building is empty!” (Those last two sentances are interesting, but anyway) until the Landlord deigns to do anything about it. My only problem now is that the sign reads “This building is empty”, and I’m slightly worried that the postman will assume they mean our flat as well.

Ah well.