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The Holland Estate Is Saved

January 14, 2016
by the gentle author

This week, in response to a triumphant campaign, residents of Holland Estate have received letters from East End Homes revoking the demolition notices that were served upon them last year.

In 2015,  social landlord East End Homes submitted a pre-planning application for demolition of the Estate next to Petticoat Lane prior to any consultation with the people who live there and a member of the staff of East End Homes told residents their homes were “unfit for human habitation.”

So Contributing Photographer Sarah Ainslie & I visited flats on the Estate to take these portraits and assess the accommodation for ourselves. We found the gracious brick structures are built of better quality materials than most modern developments and are humanely conceived, offering hospitable living spaces which are cherished and well-maintained by the occupants.

Working in partnership with Telford Homes, social landlord East End Homes proposed demolishing the Estate and replacing it with a high-rise development mixing private and social housing but, for the meantime, this plan is dismissed.

Ali Sahed Goyas &  Jahnara Choudhury have lived on the Holland Estate for twenty-five years

Pascha Singh has lived on the Holland Estate for more than thirty years

Mahjdiyat, Shammi, Manveen & Arshan Ahmed at home

Yolanda De Los Buies has lived on the Holland Estate for seventeen years

Saleha Khanam with her son Shamsur Rahman and his wife Rushna Begum and their children Yaseen and Hamza – Four generations of this family have lived on the Holland Estate

Azar Ali has lived on the Holland Estate for thirty-one years

Nessa Aifun cares for her husband Rustum at home

Saleh Ahmed & Rusnobun Bibi and their grandchildren Aakifah & Ismael

Kabir Ahmed & Nasrin Rob with their children Aakifah & Ismael

Murtata Choudhury has lived on the Holland Estate for fifty years

Shikiko Aoyama Sanderson & Jarrod Sanderson have lived on the Estate for six years

Samirun Chowdhury  with Saima Chowdhury and Taher Uddin outside Samirun & Saima’s home

Enrico Bonadio has lived on the Holland Estate for three years

Rob Ali, Ali Sayed Goyas, Asab Miah, Murtata Choudhury, Saleh Ahmed with Aakifah Ahmed & Mohammed Ismael Ali

Photographs copyright @ Sarah Ainslie

You can follow the Residents Against Demolition campaign on



Twitter  @bbcresidents

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At the Holland Estate

14 Responses leave one →
  1. January 14, 2016

    Absolutely delighted – congratulations to yourself and Sarah, proving gentle people can achieve great things against the Giants – without throwing stones. Well done

  2. gabrielle permalink
    January 14, 2016

    Generations of my family come from this area.

    If East End Homes have been found to ‘be economical with the truth’, one wonders how many other estates have been destroyed by misleading information. There should be repercussions!

  3. January 14, 2016

    Hurray! That’s such good news!
    Well done everyone who worked to get this result, you’re great

  4. January 14, 2016

    Great news, congrats to all the residents who fought for their homes, well done! Valerie

  5. Joan Barleycorn permalink
    January 14, 2016

    Another victory for the people on your patch against the soulless forces who conspire against them. How relieved they must feel. Well done to all who campaigned and to those who were willing to listen.

    For those with no immediate connection, like myself, it is heartening to know that good sense has prevailed. It keeps the faith alive.

  6. January 14, 2016

    Such wonderful news- thank you for all you and others have done to save these family homes. Long may they live happily there !

  7. Vicky permalink
    January 14, 2016

    Excellent news for the 600 residents of the Holland Estate! Lets hope that EastEnd Homes now do the maintenance work on these buildings as agreed when the estate was handed over by Tower Hamlets Council in 2006. I’m also happy as I do so enjoy the 1920s buildings and the beautiful gardens as seen from Bell Lane when I pass by.

  8. January 14, 2016

    This is a lovely blog; Here we have a long established mixed community living in harmony, long may it continue. They are nice they even find time to grow pot plants. Allahu Akbar God is Greater. John B.

  9. Carol Dance permalink
    January 14, 2016

    Oh, well done, well done, well done!

  10. January 14, 2016

    This is wonderful news BUT not all of Holland estate has been saved so far!!! WHELER HOUSE is still under threat of demolition! We will fight as hard as we can to stop our homes being sacrificed. Thanks to all the Spitalfields life readers and to the Gentle Author for your support.

  11. Candice permalink
    January 14, 2016

    That is so wonderful! If old things keep getting torn down, the history of that place will be lost forever. We have similar problems here in the States. So, congratulations!!


  12. Raki permalink
    January 14, 2016

    My dad is pictured(7) he’s been living there for 31years but before him lived my grandfather which is why my dad never moved. I love that house. All my childhood memories are there. So this is great news. The area is changing but that doesn’t mean everything needs to go.

  13. robert king permalink
    January 14, 2016

    I was living on the The Holland Estate in the 50’s and 60’s,grew up there and am so glad it is not to be demolished.Had a great childhood there and many fond memories and often walk through it on my way to Liverpool Street Station.

  14. January 18, 2016

    Wonderful news and fabulous photographs.

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