The Social Centre Bulletin: Raise the roof!

The second instalment of this new column for Freedom News, which aims to support and publicise what’s happening at radical social centres around Britain.

Let’s start our second Social Centre Bulletin with a massive congratulations to the Decolonise Fest crew and the DIY Space for London peeps for putting on an amazing event for punx of colour that illustrates just why our social centres are so vital and loved. They put together a fantastic two-day event full of workshops to inspire and empower with both days capped with art workshops and an array of bands from around the world. Shortly after they shared a fundraiser for one of the organisers who is having a difficult house move and it’s still open to donations so if you fancy helping out with a little material solidarity head on over and donate by clicking here.

Truly an epic event that we hope has many more years to come!

Close to success for Cowley!

The donation drive for The Cowley Club‘s crumbling crown in Brighton is currently standing at £10,096 of the £11,700 goal, which I’m sure they are deeply thankful for and will put to good use. Their 100-year-old (and the rest) building is in dire need of repairs and they want to erect a permanent memorial to Anna Campbell (Hêlîn Qereçox) — who gave their life fighting as part of the Kurdish Women’s Protection Unit last year — in the form of a mural visible from the busy London Road.

Sure they would appreciate any addition support!

Click here for their fundraising page.

But BASE has long way to go

Over in Bristol BASE (Base for Anarchism and Solidarity in Easton) which used to be known as Kebele has sadly had a harder time of it only raising £1,305 of the needed £18,000. This vital spaces is used constantly by activists and organisers with it’s volunteers working tirelessly to host fantastic events of the community.

They could definitely do with support from comrades with the scratch to spare.

Click here for their fundraising page.

Site plans

In other news the Social Centre Network has been steering towards a launch of a website to further develop the community and share info about what’s occurring.

The website will act as a portal to radical Social Centres and some autonomous spaces in Wales, Ireland, Scotland and England and provides an up to date listing of these fantastic spaces as well as a hub for resources and news. The SCN is a grassroots initiative that links together the radical independent community social centres throughout the UK and Éire. Its aim is to improve communication and co-operation between autonomous spaces by sharing resources, ideas and information.

If you are involved in a space, looking to set one up or want to get involved hit them up! The website launches today and you can have a gander by clicking here.

And a fair wind

Finally, we’ve been told that next year will feature a brand spanking new anarchist bookfair to be hosted in social centre, we’ll have a feature on it next month as well as news on the Bradford Anarchist Bookfair which is being held at the 1 in 12 Club in September, but it’s beautiful to hear that such awesome events are finding homes in such wonderful spaces. More of this please!

Events of note

Most social centres have a regular line up of events, meetings, open drop-ins etc, but here are some major and minor events over the next two weeks (Contact them / check Facebook pages etc for more details)

July 26th
Swine Tax + The Klittens + No Teeth + New Horror at the Star and Shadow, Newcastle.

July 27th
Partisan’s 2nd Birthday Party! Come and celebrate the second birthday of this fantastic Mancunian social space at the Partisan Collective.

Punk 4 The Homeless Punk fundraiser for homeless street children via Casa Alianza at Sumac in Nottingham.

July 28th
Hu(man) Nature – Installation feat. works by the artists Hana Wilde, Giacinta Frisillo and Rachel Clive. The exhibition takes a new approach to ecology, leaving behind patriarchal and capitalist ideologies of exploitation and hyper-separation at GAS (Glasgow Autonomous Space).

August 2nd
DGA QUEER PROM – (Drag King, Genderf***, Alternative Drag Collective) Come along to the dream prom night as DGA reclaims a traditionally hetronormative right of passage into an inclusive celebration of queer cabaret, drag and dancing at the Star and Shadow.

August 4th
Fundraiser for the venue, lineup foregrounding queer/NB artists at GAS (Glasgow Autonomous Space).

August 15th
Greater Manchester Keep Our NHS Public Meeting at Partisan Collective.

Shoot us a message if we’ve turned a blind eye to an event you want highlighting!

~Peter Ó’Máille


Additional Resources

Organise! Magazine have a map of Social Centres here.
Radical Routes have a great guide to setting up a social centre here.
Social Centre Network website here.