Neighbours say workers are living on construction site in St John’s Wood

PUBLISHED: 17:28 21 June 2018

Warner House, Abercorn Estate in St John’s Wood.

Warner House, Abercorn Estate in St John’s Wood.


Workers have reportedly been living on a construction site in Abercorn Estate in St John’s Wood.

Maida Vale local Murad Qureshi said that he saw mattresses and clothing on the building site. He contacted construction union Unite to alert them.

Unite regional officer Paul Lomax visited Warner House, one of three blocks on the estate, where work is being done on the basement.

He observed a green sofa, clothes hung on a washing line, mattresses and food containers at the site. Neighbours in Warner House have confirmed seeing clothes hung out to dry.

“Workers must never be allowed to live on a construction site, the potential for serious injury is huge and there are also massive occupational health issues that need to be considered,” said Mr Lomax.

Mr Qureshi also alerted the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). “It’s the kind of stuff you see in the developing world,” he said. “Health and safety regulations have been developed for a reason in this country. It’s the kind of thing we have to guard against.”

A HSE spokesperson said: “HSE has visited the Warner House site twice recently. The first occasion was as part of our campaign of inspection visits in London. During this visit a prohibition notice was served preventing all work on site, other enforcement action to address safety management matters was also taken.

“The second visit was made on June 4 in direct response to a complaint. Inspectors found no evidence of workers sleeping on site at either visit. Further follow-up work with the principal contractor will be taking place.”

Mr Lomax also wrote to Westminster City Council with his findings. According to an email seen by the Wood and Vale, the council has no powers to control work practice on the site. “We only enforce the building regulations, which set standards for construction. Clearly the enforcing authority in this instance is the HSE,” said Julian Tanton, Head of Building Control at the council.

Geoff Barraclough, Labour councillor for Maida Vale, said: “These reports are very worrying if true. Construction workers do a critical job in London and don’t deserve to be exploited by penny-pinching developers.”

The freehold of Warner House is owned by a private company, Kunta Kinte Ltd. Its two main shareholders, both of whom are registered at 7 Bradman House on the estate, were unavailable for comment.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

8 minutes ago

A man has been convicted over the “senseless” stabbing of a Dutch man in Camden Lock in 2016.


Camden Council will correct a sign that says a park will be closed every day at dusk, despite it having no way to shut it.


Keir Starmer has said the government’s approach to Universal Credit is similar to the “hostile environment” policy that led to the Windrush scandal.


A Cumbrian couple have been left scared for their property after receiving a bailiff’s letter demanding council tax for a Maida Vale property they have no connection to.


Barnet Council has apologised to residents after bungled changes to bin collections saw households going nearly two weeks without having them emptied


A passing mechanic saved the day after a “rogue Diwali firework” set the roof of a Hornsey bar on fire a week ago last Thursday.

Yesterday, 16:30

The Phoenix Cinema will hold a meeting on fundraising for the historic cinema this weekend.

Yesterday, 13:14

A special interfaith Remembrance Sunday parade in Highgate saw attendees from across faiths and generations join together to pay their respects to those who fought and died in the First World War.


Looking to get your child interested in a sport? Allianz Park, home to rugby union team Saracens, welcomes people of all ages to join their family of supporters and discover how their core values Honesty, Discipline, Humility and Work Rate underpin everything they do off and on the pitch.

As part of a major refurb, the London Marriott Hotel Maida Vale has renamed its three new-look function rooms to reflect the geography and rich history of the area. The largest, perfect for weddings and large meetings, is named after a Hampstead subterranean river, The Westbourne.

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now