Mike Weatherley, the Conservative Member of Parliament for Hove and Portslade, has slammed those squatters who are holed up in a building in central Brighton, as they prevent 150 new jobs coming to the city.
Squatters are currently occupying the Old Post Office in Ship Street, Brighton, which is set to be developed into a new 250-seat restaurant. However, TGI Friday’s has been able to fulfil its planning obligations, as it cannot gain access to the site, which has put the whole project in jeopardy as the company has been forced to withdraw its licensing application to Brighton & Hove City Council. This comes at a time when young people – all people in fact – are crying out for jobs in the city.
Mike has been campaigning for squatting to be criminalised since his election to Parliament in 2010 and has been supported by the Prime Minister. Squatting is a huge problem in Brighton & Hove, with numerous instances of this organised and frequently menacing behaviour blighting the lives of ordinary people. Irate squatters have dubbed the new law “Weatherley’s Law” following Mike’s campaign to introduce the new legislation. Mike is now campaigning for the law to be extended to commercial properties.
Commenting, Mike said: “Time and time again squatters come out with ridiculous excuses for their illegal and sometimes criminal behaviour. It’s clear with the squatters in the Old Post Office that all they are doing is harming Brighton & Hove’s economy and preventing 150 local people getting much needed new jobs. Residents have frankly had enough with these freeloading, job-shy layabouts who are now preventing those who actually want jobs from getting them.”