We're being forced out of our area – posh newcomers & celebrities are driving house prices up | The Sun

FRUSTRATED residents have said that they are being forced out of their town as posh newcomers and celebrities drive up house prices.

Streatham in London is now home to a number of famous faces such as rapper Dave, Naomi Campbell, and MasterChef's John Torode.

The area is a far cry from the one which 20 years ago was dubbed the "worst high street in the UK".

Streatham's remarkable rise has seen average house costs soar to around £604,163.

But locals who have been there for years are concerned that some communities are dwindling because gentrification is "forcing residents out".

One such community is made up of the Somalis, of which there is a significant population based in Streatham.

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Ali Mohammed , 28, who was born to two first-generation Somali immigrants, is a huge fan of the "hub" of Somalian people who now call South London home.

But despite the Somali community having "been there for decades", Mr Mohammed is disappointed to see the community there is now dwindling.

He told MyLondon: "Gentrification is the main reason.

“The rent prices have rocketed, and you can see a slow increase of 'middle class shops' in the area. We do need them, but not as many as we have now.

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“But the area still has a strong community, it’s still Somali Town, it’s just nowhere near what it was 15 years ago.”

The 28-year-old is also "one million percent" bothered that Streatham still doesn’t have a London Underground Station.

“If you need to go somewhere southern such as Croydon or Tulse Hill, you’re doomed. You have no choice but to get off at Brixton or Balham and take a bus. I’ve spent so much money on travel in the area, and even at night the services are packed."

Meanwhile, Iqra Ali, 26, says she has loved living in the area since she moved to the UK from Somalia 20 years ago – and she doesn't want things to change.

“This is where my home began,” she said.

Iqra added: “The Somali people unite and help each other by acting as interpreters for those who don’t speak English as a first language, and they’ve been here for over 20 years in some cases.

"The community also does lots of work in deterring crime, alcohol, and drugs. We keep young people busy by creating activities and opportunities for them such as sports.”

Iqra is a huge fan of the town's High Road, which she said creates a sense of community among the local business owners.

Pravin Amin, 80, a retired chartered civil engineer now works with the community at Immanuel and St Andrew's Church has lived in Streatham for 15 years.

He also touched on the importance of "community" in the London suburb.

Pravin said that this has stemmed from "people having been established there" for a very long time.

And he told MyLondon that the high street's "grand nature" has now attracted people from nearby places like Croydon and Kingston.

Will Antenbring, 22, is a barista at Brickwood Coffee & Bread London on the high road.

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Hailing from Kent, Will didn’t know Streatham decades ago when it earnt the infamous title of having the UK's 'worst high street', but he ‘would definitely say now that is not my opinion'.

He’s also a massive fan of the "culture and massive diversity here, that’s a facet of living in London".

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