Compulsory Purchase Order plot on Eastenders

Trust the BBC to skip over a massive plot opportuntiy that simply doesn’t activate their own particular predjudices. In a recent episode an undertaker talks to a friend about his efforts to overcome the personal impact of a CPO.

Despite the fact his undertaker’s premises are subject to a compulsory purchase order, Les [is] cheerful – pointing to the boarded up charity shop he tells Pam they’re moving to Turpin Road.

Instead of focusing on this story, in which a rightfully owned property is taken, the plot up to this point had focused on the loss of plots for market stalls by the owners who rented them from the Council. Who’s was the most egregious rights-violation? The undertaker’s story. Who got the focus? The stall-holder tennants.

Wouldn’t it have been nice, rather than seeing the corrupt Ian Beale and the heroic BBC fighting for the rights of tennants on the market, we saw a two sided battle where the Council weighed the arguments against CPOs with the political pressure exerted by the historic square? This would have been an intriging and subtle plot, instead we get a mass-arrival of dime a dozen new characters designed to tick PC boxes, and silly infodumps like the one above.

3 Comments

    1. The same attitude leads to both Zach – as Simon points out these people just do not see anything basically wrong with taking stuff by the threat of violence (sorry with “Compulsory Purchase”), it was not always this way…..

      For example near the heart of the Rockefeller area of New York City there are two small non descript buildings – they do not fit in with the planned city air that Rockefeller (mostly the son – rather than the father, who was really not interested in this sort of thing) had created. Why are these two small buildings there? Because the owners said “no” to selling – and even in the 1930s it was not (yet) normal to just use the power of government to make people sell.

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      1. Google for The Big Dig to see just how seriously some American cities take private property. Boston opted to upgrade their roads by digging underground at great expense rather than use Eminent Domain (= Compulsory Purchase Orders) to take private property.

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