A film-maker and actor who dated Bob Marley claims she is being threatened with the imminent repossession of the London flat where the reggae musician lived and wrote I Shot the Sheriff in 1973.
Esther Anderson, 76, bought the flat in Cheyne Row, Chelsea, in 1968. She has lived there for 52 years but says she could face losing the property in seven days because of a row over what she calls “inflated” service charges.
She has launched a GoFundMe page to raise £10,000 using the hashtag #GetUpStandUpforEsther.
A possession hearing is scheduled for 18 March. On her fundraising page, Anderson says: “Every night for the past month, I have gone to bed in tears, anxious, in a state of disbelief. It has been so upsetting and nerve-wracking … I can barely sleep.”
She was being prosecuted by the property management company TPS Estates, whose director, Nigel Cross, confirmed the hearing date and said: “As it is in effect going to court, we are unable to comment any further. It is in the hands of the legal processes.”
Anderson is described on the fundraising page as “a living legend, pioneer, activist, film-maker, Oscar-nominated and NAACP [National Association for the Advancement of Colored People] award-winning actress and artist”.
It is understood that Anderson and Marley’s relationship lasted for about two years during the early 1970s, during which he spent time living at the flat.
In 1972, when he was yet to fully establish himself as an artist outside his native Jamaica, Marley signed a record deal in London and embarked on a UK tour. During this period he is said to have led a nomadic existence, spending time at a number of places in the capital.
According to Anderson’s current partner, Marley wrote I Shot the Sheriff – later covered by Eric Clapton and others – at the flat. He said Anderson was unable to raise the money to pay the charges, hence her decision to launch the fundraising campaign.
According to the GoFundMe page, TPS Estates took over as the management agents responsible for the maintenance of the building in 2018.
The page added that Anderson could lose her home if she did not pay the £8,500 being demanded for service charges.
Anderson said: “I arrived in England in 1962, before Jamaica’s independence, as a young girl with nothing except my easel, paintbrushes, pageant dresses, a hunger to succeed and desire to put my native country on the map.”
She said she did various jobs but “gave it all up to help Bob and the Wailers fulfil their destiny”.
Anderson added: “I bought my flat in 1968 in Chelsea with the money I made. It has been my home ever since, and I have lived here for over 52 years.”
Marley, who died in 1981 aged 36, would have turned 75 this year.
Source: Bob Marley’s former partner faces loss of flat where he lived in 1970s | Music | The Guardian
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