|Box Row: Natalie Campbell|
The owner of a Kensington apartment tried to throw her female neighbour down the front steps of their multi-million pound building because she left a box outside.
Natalie Campbell, 52, is the absent owner of the £1.9m maisonette in the Kensington Palace Conservation Area and claimed the UPS package was on her property.
She rents the apartment for approximately £6,000 a month, but pays no service charges, to the despair of other residents.
The property freeholder has instigated legal proceedings to force her to forfeit her lease and neighbours have leafleted tenants and local estate agents to highlight her illegal sub-let.
She was convicted of assaulting 46 year-old Georgia Wagner, who lives in a £1.5m upstairs flat, after she put out a UPS box for pick-up in front of the building.
There is ill-feeling between the pair after Ms Wagner involved herself in the leafleting campaign and signed an affidavit supporting the freeholder’s legal case, which has lasted twenty years.
“She launched at me as soon as she saw me and said something like: ‘I’ve had it with all of you leaving stuff on my property.’
“As she was screaming at me she started pounding,” explained photoshoot project manager Ms Wagner at Hammersmith Magistrates Court yesterday.
“She certainly hit me, but I put my hands in front of me so she hit my hands.
“I got scared and tried to stop her throwing me out of the building. she tried to pull me out.
|Dispute: Kensington Address|
“She was pounding on me and at the same time trying to pull me down the stairs.
Ms Wagner cowered in a corner as the attack continued. “I just said: ‘Please stop Natalie’ I didn’t hit back.
“I then screamed for help and when my neighbour came down Natalie let go of me and disappeared into her flat.
“I was totally shaking, just trembling,” added Ms Wagner, who suffered a small cut to her hand, which became infected and took five weeks to heal.
Prosecutor Miss Sharon Michaels told the court: “The defendant seemed quite upset about where the box was placed and started shouting at her.
“She was pounding on her and trying to pull her down the stairs and a neighbour saw her with her hands up defending herself and Campbell over her with her arms raised, hitting her.
“There is a great deal of animosity between both sides and the defendant sees red.
“The boxes belong to someone who, in her eyes, is part of the conspiracy against her.”
Ms Wagner confirmed the neighbours were upset by a compulsory £3,500 service charge imposed to finance the freeholder’s legal fight with Campbell.
“He (the freeholder) now wants to charge us and we said: ‘This isn’t right.’ She does not live in the building, she lets out her flat.
“He’s trying to get service charges she owes.
“It took five years last time to get Natalie to pay for the outside of the building and in that time it decayed.”
Campbell says the neighbours have directed “animosity” and “anger” towards her, claiming Ms Wagner once said: “It’s four versus one. This is war.”
Miss Wagner strongly denies ever uttering the threat or pushing Campbell first during the confrontation. “That’s ludicrous, absolutely ridiculous,” she told the court.
Windsor Court, Moscow Road, Bayswater said of her neighbours: “They are all friends of the freeholder.”
She claimed Ms Wagner had left four large boxes of tiles in the garden area in front of her maisonette. “The final straw was the boxes, yes.
“It’s my garden and I did say: ‘Get out and move those boxes.’
“I was in her way, but I wasn’t doing it deliberately and she pushed me out of the way.”
Campbell maintains it is legal to sub-let the two-bed, which she bought for £120,000 in 1993, and provides her only income as she tries to pay-off debts of £50,000.
She was conditionally discharged for twelve months and ordered to pay £50 compensation to Ms Wagner, £500 court costs and a £15 victim surcharge.
Afterwards Ms Wagner said: “I thought I was going to be thrown down the stairs, they are stone stairs.
“I was really shaken up and scared for two weeks. She has a key to the building and is a person who knows where I am.
“I was aware being chucked down the stairs was not going to be a pleasant experience and three months earlier she was screaming at me because in her mind we’ve conspired against her.
“We felt quite outraged that we pay our service charges and she doesn’t and makes quite a lot of money renting her flat and us paying her court fees on top is a little bit much. That’s taking the Mickey.”