Eviction of woman is stopped at the eleventh hour with town hall help

Friends show support for Carmen outside her flat.
Friends show support for Carmen outside her flat. / A.J.G.
  • Carmen has been without electricity for 14 months due to a shortage of money but managed to save her home at the last moment after the council got bank to agree a rent deal

There were jubilant scenes in the García Prieto district of Antequera on Tuesday when a surprise last-minute deal stopped a retired woman from being evicted from her home.

Sixy-five-year-old Carmen had woken up on Tuesday expecting it to be one of her last days in the flat she has lived in for thirty years. On Monday, a court decision came though in favour of mortgage-lender Bankia repossessing the property.

Carmen has been unable to pay the mortgage for four years on the flat after she lost her job. Lack of funds has also meant that she has been without electricity for 14 months. She had already begun to pack her possessions fearing eviction was imminent.

However, this story was to have a happy ending as, hearing about Carmen's plight, the welfare and legal services department of Antequera council swung into action, managing to halt the final repossession order.

Mayor Manuel Barón said: "We've opened a route to reach an agreement with Bankia whose legal representative has cooperated one hundred per cent." Carmen's supporters had asked for the bank to agree to her paying it a reduced rent that would allow her to stay living there.

To shouts of "Carmen is staying" from neighbours, the pensioner said: "I am grateful for all the support they are giving me... there has to be a more humane way". Carmen was also expected to soon get her electricity back.