It’s a project run by the excellent Rosie Walker of Renters Rights London tenant’s rights group. A three year funded programme to better educate the capital’s tenants so they know what their rights are.
It always strikes me as strange that whereas most people know a handful of things about driving a car – what fuel it takes, where to put it (hopefully), who to sue in a rear-ender etc; so many tenants know zilch of their occupation rights.
You don’t need to be a mechanic to drive a car and you don’t need to have a lawyer’s depth of knowledge to be a tenant but a few facts would be handy. Which is why Rosie called me in.
Its funny how things work out. Whoever was running the training venue in Dalston forgot to open it up for us and the delegates but Rosie, displaying impressive initiative, found us the back bar of a Turkish Restaurant just around the corner, so instead of spending the afternoon in a sterile meeting room we pushed the tables together and examined all sorts of landlord and tenant law whilst nursing a pint and a plate of Taramasalata and Olives. A very civilised way to train.
The day didn’t end well though. I travelled home on tube and bus and it was only when Frazzy asked me where the car was so she could drive to her mate’s that I remembered I had driven to the station when I went up there, as a consequence it was parked a couple of miles away.
A trainer in the dog-house.
Here is what Rosie said about the day:
Unlike the misleading advice offered by government agencies, this was a funny, honest, no-nonsense, nitty-gritty guide to survival as a private renter in London – and it gave us a good insight into council enforcement powers too.
Ben is brilliant – he makes legal technicalities interesting and accessible. You could see the penny drop when people grasped some of the fundamental concepts – it changed the whole way they think about their home.