Court Case Victory for Red Factory squatters
news at tlio.org.uk
Tue Apr 29 17:10:39 BST 2008
Court Case Victory for the Red Factory
Portland Square squat gets reprieve in Bristol County Court.
See pictures of the squat and squatters here
Bristol squatters were in Greyfriars court this
morning to oppose the granting of an Interim
Posession Order (IPO) against the occupiers of
the Red Factory squat in Portland Square. If
granted, residents would have had to leave within
24 hours or face criminal proceedings. Marcus
Leigh, a representative of multinational property
developer Askon estates failed to name a date
when he knew the building had been squatted. He
is required to do this under the provisions of
the 1997 Criminal Justice Act (CJA) - an infamous
piece of legislation bought in at the end of John
Major's Conservative government.
The Red Factory is a large squat at the junction
of Cave Street and Portland Square in St. Pauls,
Bristol. Occupied in the middle of January 2008
by a pioneering group of squatters who braved
pigeon dust, damp and absence of all services, it
has become home to a dozen homeless people and
holds regular community events including a
cinema. The building has been tidied up, painted
and made habitable by people who would otherwise
have been sleeping on Bristol's streets.
With a controversial open door policy the Red
Factory has been, at times, a difficult squat to
run but has taken into account the concerns of
neighbours including the Perion Centre next door.
The Red Factory collective are committed to
running the building as a community enterprise as
recommended in the St. Pauls neighbourhood plan.
They have contacted Askon to see if they can
secure the building for community use and have
made a substantial financial offer .
If Askon had won today's case the building would
become empty and lain derelict, as it has for
more than twenty years. Despite taking ownership
around the year 2000 Askon have done next to
nothing with the building. With the onset of the
current property price crash it seems unlikely
they could sell it quickly, particularly because
the building is grade two listed and would need up to £1m to restore.
Bristol Housing Action Movement is making an
appeal for suport for the Red Factory, both
financially and in any practical way possible. We
believe the squatters may face another court
case, and welcome any support. Contact Ben from
Bham on 07833 100399 or by email at housingaction at yahoo.co.uk
The Pierian Centre :
A space for conferences, meetings and celebrations of all shapes and sizes.
Located in Grade 1-listed Portland Square, the
Centre is an oasis of calm right in the heart of
Bristol. Within easy reach of the M32, the City
Centre and Temple Meads railway station, we have
ample parking right here in the Square. You can
book a room for your own event - and also browse
the range of open events and activities on offer.
Askon Estates (UK) Limited
16 St Stephens Street
Tel : 0117-925-4570
Fax : 0117-922-6816
Revived in 1984, Bristol Housing Action (BHAM) is
a non-heirarchical collective of sqatters and
their supporters. We help provide housing and
other support for homeless people.
We are committed to the opening of community
spaces and to solidarity with existing social
centres.We campaign against the privatisation of
public land and housing and for the defence of public space.
Related Link: <http://www.squatbristol.org.uk/>http://www.squatbristol.org.uk/
Contact Ben from Bham on 07833 100399 or by email at housingaction at yahoo.co.uk
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