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Squatters vow to leave Gordon Ramsay pub after lawyers secure High Court order

By PA News

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A group of squatters have said they will leave a Gordon Ramsay pub after lawyers secured a High Court order for the possession of the premises.

The squatters locked themselves inside Grade II-listed York & Albany hotel and gastropub, situated just outside Regent’s Park, last week.

In a statement shared with the PA news agency, a spokesperson for the group, which said it was the Anarchist Association London Branch, vowed they would leave within 24 hours.

The statement, which referred to Ramsay as “the foul-mouthed chef”, said: “This swanky building has been left empty for years, even though Camden has some of the worst levels of rough sleeping in the country.

A court order taped to the building (Lucy NorthPA)
A court order taped to the building (Lucy NorthPA)

“Some of these rough sleepers decided to take their right to housing into their own hands.”

It added: “The fact that the chef was able to obtain the order that quickly shows that the legal system is designed for the rich. It has nothing to do with justice.

“Laws won’t help us, politicians won’t help us. They only serve the wealthy and powerful.

“Only we can help ourselves. If people are not allowed to survive, they will take action to do so. All evictions are violence. But that won’t stop us from squatting and we hope our actions will inspire others to take back control of their lives.”

On Thursday, lawyers for Gordon Ramsay Holdings International Limited (GRHI) told a judge it had an “immediate right to possession” of the pub and asked for an order to retake the property amid a “risk of public disturbance”.

Squatters inside the York & Albany pub on Wednesday (Victoria Jones/PA)
Squatters inside the York & Albany pub on Wednesday (Victoria Jones/PA)

Judge Simon Brown granted the order at a short hearing in London.

It is understood from court staff that the order paves the way for High Court enforcement officers to retake the occupied pub in the coming days.

It is understood the group plans to vacate the premises by midday on Friday.

In 2007, film director Gary Love bought the freehold of the former 19th century coaching inn.

He subsequently leased the property to Mr Ramsay on a 25-year term with an annual rent of £640,000.

The Kitchen Nightmares host unsuccessfully attempted to free himself from the lease in a legal battle at the High Court in 2015.

The venue went on sale at the end of last year with a guide price of £13 million.

According to a Companies House document, GRHI is the holding company that offers management and operational support to the restaurants within the Gordon Ramsay Restaurants Limited group.

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