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  • Wipe out: The tax debt scandal forcing people from their homes. A special report

Wipe out: The tax debt scandal forcing people from their homes. A special report

Issue 1249

Wipe out: The tax debt scandal forcing people from their homes. A special report

Wipe out: The tax debt scandal forcing people from their homes. A special report

Council tax arrears are now the single biggest issue clogging up British courts, as fees and fines cause the original debt to spiral. The result is often homelessness. In a special Big Issue report, barrister Alan Murdie describes a chaotic and faceless system.

Also this week…

Robert Macfarlane writes what led him to begin to collect little-known words that celebrate our environment. The result is a glorious list that brings together the best of landscape and language.

As our #WhyBooksMatter literacy campaign gathers pace, we have received huge support – especially from those on the frontline. Librarians from the West Midlands contacted us to reveal proposed closures in their area, where nine branches and one mobile library face the axe. Despite being gagged from discussing the closures, they are standing up to shout about what the cuts really mean. We publish their story.

The suicide of Charlotte Rampling’s sister aged 23 didn’t catch up with the actress until her 40s when depression set in and she disappeared from view. Now, Rampling tells The Big Issue how she found a way through it.

As always, you’ll find much, much more inside.