UK & World News
'Anti-Homeless' Metal Studs Removed From Flats
Metal studs installed to prevent homeless people from sleeping outside private flats in London have been removed after more than 120,000 people signed a petition.
Their use this week at a block of flats in Southwark, south London, had been described as "brutal" by homelessness charity St Mungo's Broadway.
London Mayor Boris Johnson welcomed the decision to take them out, writing on Twitter: "Pleased developer on Southwark Bridge Rd has done the right thing & appears to have removed terrible spikes designed to deter rough sleeping."
Supermarket Tesco has removed a similar installation from outside one of its stores in Regent Street, central London, ahead of a protest by the Left Unity party.
A spokesman for the supermarket said: "Customers told us they were intimidated by anti-social behaviour outside our Regent Street store and we put studs in place to try and stop it.
"These studs have caused concern for some who have interpreted them as an anti-homeless measure so we have decided to remove them to address this concern.
"We will find a different solution and hope this clears up any confusion."
Bianca Todd, of Left Unity, said: "These spikes being removed is a great victory. Following on from our protest at Tesco, these private developers were next on the list.
"Everyone who has campaigned on this issue has sent a message that anti-homeless spikes are not OK anywhere.
"Homeless people need homes, not spikes. Any company putting in anti-homeless spikes in the future should know that they will make themselves a target for protest."