As regular readers of the blog may have gathered, we’re a bit spiky, gobby and love getting in the faces of certain political enemies to wind them up something rotten. However, we realise that in the project of bringing about radical change, there are times when positive alternatives that are about building the new world in the decaying one that we currently endure need to be promoted for all they’re worth. The Stirrer is NOT the appropriate vehicle to do this! So, in order to promote positive alternatives, we’d like to introduce The Estuary ALTERNATIVE

Please note that this blog is very much a work in progress – as you can plainly see from the fact that currently, there are only three posts that have been published! As for the links in the sidebar, we have only just scratched the surface… So, if your grassroots project isn’t featured, feel free to drop us a line at: with some information about what you do and the all important URL and we’ll feature you…

Property developers left in no doubt as to what we think of them

(Thanks to Lolly for the photo)

Last night (4.4) saw the annual Property Developer Awards at the Grosvenor House hotel on Park Lane in London. This is where all of the developers who are ripping the heart out of London with their complicity in social cleansing get together to congratulate each other and celebrate their ‘achievements’. This year, the award went to Savills who are playing a major role in offering ‘advice’ on the ‘regeneration’ of council estates. Note the use of quotation marks around the words ‘advice’ and ‘regeneration’ – the result of the intervention of the likes of Savills leads to the replacement of a significant amount of social housing by unaffordable private accommodation and the tearing apart of communities as residents are relocation to the fringes of London and beyond.

Well last night, the developers got a little taste of how pissed off and angry people are at seeing the estates, pubs, cafes, shops, etc. that make up the fabric of their lives torn down to be replaced by yet more swanky apartment developments that act as little more than investment opportunities for the already super rich. A lively, noisy, irreverent and militant picket outside Grosvenor House left the attendees of the awards ceremony in no doubt as to what those on the receiving end of their ‘developments’ think of them. The pile of steaming horse manure left at the entrance was a particularly eloquent expression of what we think of these parasites. Many thanks to the Sexual Avengers ( who called the action and everyone else who turned up, including our mates from Class War. What made the action even better was the complete absence of Trots and paper sellers who always end up acting as a fire safety blanket when it comes to protests and actions – they weren’t missed!

Maybe, just maybe the tide is starting to turn in our favour. With the removal of the developers’ apologist, Dave Hill from the columns of the Guardian and more critical pieces like this one from Oliver Wainwright appearing: The property billboards that reveal the truth about Britain’s luxury housing market it could be that certain sections of the mainstream media are starting to wake up to the extent of the problem. Every little bit helps although we’re not expecting the likes of the London Evening Standard to ever come round to our way of thinking any time soon!

Last night was about us putting our money where our mouth is – going into London to show practical solidarity with housing struggle activists fighting the developers in the capital. As we’ve written before, what happens in London with ‘regeneration’ and social cleansing has a direct impact on us out here on the estuary and beyond as well: The housing domino effect… The housing struggle in London is our struggle out here – we cannot and will not be split apart by the divide and rule merchants who would rather distract us and have us fighting and blaming each other…

See It. Say it. Sorted.

A couple of weeks ago when we were on our way to the park in Stanford-le-Hope where we volunteer as gardeners, we spotted the Polish football ultras sticker shown on the left hand side of the image. We thought it looked a bit dodgy so when we got home, we did a bit of research on the Net and lo and behold, this group of football ultras have links to the far right. This isn’t what we want to see on the streets in Thurrock, particularly as we have our own indigenous fascists to contend with. Anyway, today as we were on our way to gardening, we slapped an anti-fascist sticker over the offending ultras sticker. As for the likely suspect who put the football ultras sticker up, it turns out that one of the community pay back groups who have been doing some heavy duty scrub clearance in the park have a number of Poles in their team. We’ll be monitoring the situation to see if there’s any reaction to our little intervention…

This is part of our strategy of zero tolerance when we come across activity like this. Leaving dodgy far right / fascist stickers up untouched sends out a signal to the scum that no one’s bothered about them and eventually it will embolden them to start doing worse. It only takes a few seconds to marker over crap like this or slap an anti-fascist sticker over it. Admittedly, it’s a tiny gesture but as they say, every little bit helps… Whether it’s dodgy stickers or someone working on a community project who has to be frozen out because they turn out to be knowingly associating with people who have links to the far right, zero tolerance has to be the order of the day. See It. Say It. Sorted.