The disobedience of the Ancient Legionary Knights of Barcelona


These are three brotherhoods with names that are hardly forgettable and absolutely extemporaneous (or perhaps not so much, given the dystopian situations that we are living through). The Brotherhood of Provisional Sergeants, the brotherhood of Mutilated Knights and the Brotherhood of Ancient Legionnaire Knights. Brotherhoods that, in the XXI century and despite many years of neighborhood complaints, were offered 5,000 square meters of public land on Barcelona in which to carry out their parades of the Christ of the Good Death. Land that, to add insult to injury, adjoin the courtyard of the Eulàlia Bota school. To be precise, at this point in long history, the first two brotherhoods – that of the Provisional Sergeants and that of the Mutilated Knights– they have already taken the 9,400 euros of compensation offered to each one to leave the land (they did it last summer, after a first unheeded burofax). Those who have neither taken the money nor, above all, have any intention of leaving, are the Ancient Knights Legionnaires.

In the year 2013almost a decade ago, the then special delegate of the Free Zone Consortium – entity directly dependent on the State and owner of the land of the old Sant Andreu barracks since 2004 – signed with these three brotherhoods the “free and temporary” transfer of 5,000 square meters of land for their “activities”: that is, so that they could parade through them remembering fortunately surpassed times. Until then, the legionnaires used (for quite some time) the premises as a canteen, but that firm also legally ceded the enormous outdoor plot to them. “Although his presence in the neighborhood and the rejection movements come from long before, the 2013 agreement was especially hurtful because it also gave them some land that we had been claiming for years for facilities”, he gets angry when he remembers it Santi Serrapresident of the neighborhood association.

private flats

Despite the fact that at the time of the assignment the mayor was Xavier Trias, from the current city council they insist -perhaps also to excuse that after six years of his government, the militaristic entity there continues – in which the firm depended exclusively on the Free Zone Consortium, that is to say, of the State -at that time with Mariano Rajoy to the front -, and that the city council did not play any role.

The land in question, in which the neighbors have not been able to enter, but it is enough to see the ancient decoration of its walls to imagine the interior, are classified as housing. On their Facebook page they display photos of murals in the enclosure with messages such as “Our race is not dead yet.”

The CZF handed over to the Barcelona City Council these conflictive lands in the reparcelling of old barracks, but his agreed final destination is private housing that Adif should promote, another of the actors in this urban mess. Well, Adif will have to call the competition to find the private construction companies that will finally build the future floors.

neighborhood pressure

After a lot of pressure from the neighborhood association and the district, in January 2020, the Free Zone Consortium finally sent a burofax to the three brotherhoods to rescind the cession of the spaces. they were offered 9,400 euros to the first two brotherhoods and 12,600 to the third. That is, 30,000 euros in compensation to end the problem. But things were not so simple, of course. At that first moment, none of the three brotherhoods showed up to collect the money and the deposit was made.

“We are very fed up. February 10 was the deadline. If they were not out that day, the judicial process should have been opened on the same 11”, they criticize from the neighborhood association

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In April 2021, more than a year later -the pandemic did not help speed up the procedures either-, the convening of the compensation board in which the eviction was requested was formally requested. It was then that, in the summer of 2021, the first two brotherhoods accepted the money, although the third did not, and continues to resist. They were then given a deadline to leave the space, which was February 10. But the date arrived and, surprise!, they did not leave. Now, according to what they assure from the consistory, they are in “the last phase of drafting the demand”, and once it is ready, they will present it shortly in court to initiate the eviction by judicial means.

“Unwillingness”

Sant Serra, one of the neighborhood activists from Sant Andreu, who has been on top of everything throughout the process, is very angry. “We are very fed up. The Legionaries had to be out a month and a half ago. February 10 was the deadline. If they were not out that day, the judicial process had to be opened on February 11 and they have not yet taken the lawsuit to court. Here is a lack of political will clear by everyone”, laments the neighborhood leader.


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