A man threatened protesters with a street sign after a row over an eviction boiled over in Camberwell, London. Image: Twitter/@SarahWarsamaXxx
A video showing rent campaigners being confronted outside a London estate agent has gone viral after a man appeared to brandish a street sign at protesters.
Seven representatives from London Renters Union confronted staff at agent Eaton Green in Camberwell, south-east London, accusing the firm of harassing tenants and serving an invalid no-fault eviction notice requiring them to leave the property on April 25.
But a viral video, shared thousands of times on Twitter, shows the demonstration turning ugly following a war of words that spilled out into the street on Thursday morning.
The tenant who posted the video tweeted: “My estate agents attacking us this morning after we tried to negotiate with them against an illegal eviction.”
The estate agent has accused the protesters of “making loud and aggressive demands” in the altercation.
The footage shows a man reacting angrily to an off-screen comment of: “Well done, wanker”.
He then appears to storm out onto the street and push a man before picking up a street sign while onlookers separate the pair.
One LRU protester told The Big Issue the campaigners had accused Eaton Green of issuing an invalid Section 21 eviction notice to tenants over issues regarding a HMO licence.
Protesters also claimed tenants were not given enough notice to vacate the property and accused the estate agent of harassment for allegedly arranging viewings at the property without informing the current tenants.
Tenants were looking to negotiate leaving the property in July before the situation boiled over.
The protester, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “I noticed he was kicking off when he barged past one of the tenants.
“It was extremely inappropriate, horrible. So that’s when I started filming.
“He was asking us to leave and we were like: ‘No, we want to speak to you, we want to sit down and have a conversation now’.
“That’s when I saw he just started getting aggressive with [London Renters Union member] Kane. He goes for him and it kicks off in the estate agents and then he gets outside running down the street after Kane and then he picks up the sign as well. It was bad.”
The incident has incited anger on social media after LRU called for Eaton Green to be inundated with negative reviews.
One reviewer said: “That is just not OK! Have told friends and family in London to avoid this business.”
Another reviewer added: “Asked if I could rent a property and some bloke in a Stone Island hoody ran out swinging at me”
Eaton Green has been approached for comment.
The property firm’s Twitter account responded to LRU following the incident. The tweet read: “In the spirit of clarity, 7 people entered the office led by an individual named Kane making loud and aggressive demands. Within minutes we asked them to calm down, but it was clear their intention was to intimidate and started hurling abuse and profanity.”
The Metropolitan Police have been approached for comment.
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