WIN! Enter our competition and help homelessness charity

In our final special readers’ offer for 2019, we have three copies to give away of Cash Carraway’s acclaimed memoir of the survival of her and her young daughter on and around the fringes of society in austerity Britain – Skint Estate.

And for every valid competition entry Inside Croydon receives from our registered supporters, we will be making a £3 donation to local homelessness charity Croydon Nightwatch.

Our competition is open only to paid-up patrons of Inside Croydon – as a special thank you to them for their continued support. Inside Croydon patrons pay less than the cost of a fancy coffee to help support the independent, exclusive-getting journalism we have been delivering since 2010.

Carraway’s true story of abuse and hardship is based in south London, and will resonate with many who have been caught in the poverty trap, encountered struggles with the benefits system, housing waiting lists, or witnessed the Grenfell Tower fire and the hostile environment created in Britain over the past decade.

In Skint Estate, according to The Guardian, “Cash Carraway treads the underworld of Gumtree and OpenRent. She describes how credit checks have become the modern equivalent of ‘no dogs, no blacks, no Irish’, designed to exclude certain groups – single mothers in particular – from getting a stable place.

“She develops an obsession with the housing list and how to get on it, worrying night and day that the 12 years of her daughter’s childhood will be spent in temporary hostels and Travelodge rooms.”

Cash Carraway: everyone has their price

As Carraway writes in her book: “We move every six months. You spend the first three months setting up your new life getting the bills in order, enrolling in a new school and settling in, and the next three months packing up and searching for the next place.”

With landlords asking her for six months’ rent in advance and two-month non-refundable deposit, Carraway’s plight highlights the unfairness of Right To Buy Britain, as she lives on estates where she is expected to pay £1,500 a month for a cramped one-bed flat, alongside tenants who got lucky 30 years ago.

When  Jad Adams (the chair of the Croydon Nightwatch charity which was established in 1976) reviewed Skint Estate for Inside Croydon, he wrote, “As with most of what she says in this book: she may be angry, but she does have a point.”

To enter the competition, you need to be a paid-up and signed up Inside Croydon patron. If you are not already a patron of the site but want to enter our competition, you can do so by visiting our Patreon page here.

And you need to answer this question…

In what year was Croydon Nightwatch founded?

Answers by email, please, to, with the words “Skint Estate Competition” in the subject field, and your name, address and daytime contact number in the body text.

The closing date for all entries is 5pm on Monday, January 6.

The winners will be drawn from the correct entries, and notified by email.

No cash alternatives are available for the prizes, and usual iC Ts&Cs apply.

About insidecroydon

News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email
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