Broadway Market has long been an area desired by developers, with it's location next to London Fields park and Regents canal and ever since Hackney began it's desperate money grabbing policy of selling of properties under its ownership, the vultures descended. Hackney council's financial failures have been well documented and central government's manipulation of it too (Please visit - http://www.redpepper.org.uk/natarch/x-inv-nov2002.html)
The local council with its 'Property Disposal Programme' set about selling properties at a prolific rate, with Broadway Market being one of it's main targets. Nine properties were sold of in one go to a property development company called Stirling & investments Limited for a total of £250, 000. Bargain! This was despite an offer from a London based housing Association called Notting Hill Housing Trust.
The main shareholder in the then newly formed company Donald Beskine was an accountant working for the British Government on a scheme to marketise Eastern Europe, principle advisor to the Bulgarian Economic Development Ministry and the Russian Federal Commission on the securities market. As managing director of the International Centre for Accounting practices Beskine was employed by the European Union, USAID, World Bank and OECD to attract foreign investment into Russian enterpises. Just where does he find the time to fit it all in?
In fact there were three property developers devouring the properties up for sale, one of which is Roger Ratten. He had his eyes on Francesca's cafe, which was sandwiched between a hairdressers and an old pub called the Market house, both of which he owns. His desire for gaining this middle property is in order to build flats. Tony Platia, a sicilian, had been in the cafe for thirty years paying his rent loyally to the council and had become a popular figure in the local community.
Having committed so much time and energy into this place, losing it is a terrible moment, however, losing it is exactly what somebody did when Tony's cafe was firebombed. Tony had initially refused to leave after his property had been sold at auction, having initially been withdrawn from the first auction after political pressure had been applied to then local MP Brian Sedgemore. However 5 months earlier this year the bailiffs evicted him. Now the bailiffs are going to have to come again. Please give whatever support you can.