Tense stand off: Security vans with dogs swoop to evict squatters from Hampstead convent

Security staff outside the building. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

Security staff outside the building. Picture: Nigel Sutton. - Credit: Nigel Sutton

A crew of private security staff accompanied by two vans reportedly containing dogs swooped on a former convent building behind the Royal Free Hospital to remove squatters in the early hours of this morning.

The convent building adorned with a banner erected by the squatters. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

The convent building adorned with a banner erected by the squatters. Picture: Nigel Sutton. - Credit: Nigel Sutton

The security team arrived at Bartrams Convent Hostel, in Rowland Hill Street, Belsize Park, this morning in a bid to remove around 20 squatters who have been living in the vacant building since gaining entry last week.

Security staff at the site told the Ham&High they were acting on the orders of the building’s owner and were not allowed to force entry to the property.

Instead, any squatter who leaves the building will not be allowed back in by security staff camped outside the entrance.

They have already barred up to seven squatters who left the building earlier today for work or to fetch supplies.

One of the squatters inside the building. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

One of the squatters inside the building. Picture: Nigel Sutton. - Credit: Nigel Sutton


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The security guards told the Ham&High they are prepared to wait outside the building for weeks, until every squatter has left, if required.

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