In the Ghetto - cont.

What did the neighbours make of the new residents? “ Well, it was unfortunate that the guy two doors down had a young baby and my housemate wanted to be in a rock and roll band. He came round and complained, the next thing I know my mate’s shot out his bedroom window with my airgun and I got arrested for misuse of firearms”. It certainly seems that the squatters kept the Lewes constabulary busy during their 3-year residency. The front door of 125 was kicked in so many times that eventually Brian delivered a new one off the nearby Phoenix building site with a “borrowed” dumper truck. It was never hung though as it was too big and was simply propped up against the doorframe. In the main, however, the police and the squatters maintained a reasonably friendly relationship with the occasional arrest for non-payment of fines or possession of controlled substances.

The squatter’s summer of love inevitably came to an end one night, with the stabbing of an enormous German known as Heicko the Psycho. The circumstances surrounding this event have never been fully established but fortunately he made a complete recovery and once it became known to the police that he was wanted by Interpol, he disappeared never to be seen again. Eventually the council got round to selling off the houses and the squatters were duly evicted. Apparently the council did offer to rehouse them but as Quinn remembers “that would have meant paying rent and stuff and no one was really interested”. SC

Brian Gent: no rent boy

Thanks for the memories to Brian and Quinn - More salacious
gossip from Lewes’s alternative archives next week