PICTURE EXCLUSIVE: Photojournalist ARNIE LEIBOVITZ provides evidence that one of the town centre’s biggest projects might have security issues
Squatters may have moved into the Nestlé Tower, the Croydon landmark building in the town centre undergoing a £500million redevelopment.
The office building, formally titled St George’s House, has been empty since September 2012 when the Swiss multi-national food and consumer goods company left Croydon, which had been their British operations base for nearly 50 years.
The building was bought from property speculators Minerva in 2017 by the Chinese developers, R&F Properties, and work began in the autumn to convert the 22-storey office tower into 225 private flats, as part of what they call the Queen’s Square scheme, utilising land around St George’s Walk between Park Street, the High Street, Park Lane.
Under the plans, the developers suggest providing a new civic square in front of the Town Hall.
Yesterday, at least two figures were spotted on the roof of the building.
With no visible safety harnesses or the ubiquitous hi-viz jackets and hard hats, they were clearly not development workers, and could be seen taking photographs from one of the most spectacular vantage points in south London.
Squatters have been known to occupy other office-to-residential sites around Croydon recently, and while it is uncertain whether the Nestlé Tower “visitors” have taken up residence there, their presence is hardly a good reflection on the on-site security.
No one from R&F Properties’ London offices, or their consultants or agents, had responded to Inside Croydon’s enquiries by the time of publication of this report.
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Has anyone found out who it is yet? Is there any evidence that it is Gavin Barwell and Mario Creatura looking for a solution to the Irish back stop?