Occupy Patchwork

For all who wish to show their support, but who cannot for one reason or another visit, stay or otherwise donate to the occupy sites, we welcome you to send via post a piece of cloth (10cm by 10cm), with no more then one word written on it, expressing your desire for change to;
Tent City
Finsbury Square,
London
EC2A 1RR

We will be making a patchwork out of these pieces. A banner; a tapestry behind the slogan that will hold one word with many voices: ‘OCCUPY’.

Article on the Finsbury Square Information Tent

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the last fortnight I have been wearing earplugs. The drilling in the adjacent building starts around 730am and is perceived by some as a direct provocation. It is ok for me though- the rat-a-tat-tat penetrates the earplugs in a way that the London buses, taxis, sirens, diesel generator and chatting of my fellow campers does not. And by now my subconscious knows it is time to wake up, dragging me out of whatever dream I might be meandering in and opening my eyes to judge the weather by the shade of blue on the tent canvas.

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Occupy London to host first ever gathering of UK occupations

Repost from occupylsx

Occupiers from Occupy London’s camps – at St Paul’s Courtyard and at Finsbury Square – will this weekend (19-20 November) welcome representatives from occupations across the UK, who are coming together for the first time ever.

With more than 25 occupations across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales already, delegates will begin defining the national campaign, addressing common challenges and work to find ways of moving forward. [1]

Occupations from as far afield as Newcastle and the Isle of Wight have confirmed that they will be attending, with Occupy London providing a travel subsidy to cover costs. Also attending are Bath, Brighton, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Norwich and Plymouth. Occupations in Ireland have also been invited.

Nicole Jewitt, supporter from Occupy Sheffield, comments: “In the last five weeks, we’ve seen Occupy camps spring up across the UK, as people take to the streets challenging economic inequality. With more than 40,000 people in Sheffield trapped in a spiral of debt, some of the highest unemployment figures in the country and severe cuts to services, it is galling to see news like the sale of Northern Rock, a bank saved by taxpayers being bought dirt cheap with Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Money.” [2]

“Now is the time for occupiers and supporters to come together, share knowledge and experience. We need to start working towards a national consensus on the changes we want. We are keen to reach out and work with our neighbours in Ireland as well as those in Europe, the US and around the world.”

Over two days of workshops, plenary sessions and discussions, the occupiers will be forging important links with each other and working out how best to develop the movement throughout the UK and Ireland, as well as the global community. Groups fighting against the cuts and their wider consequences of unemployment, homelessness and fuel poverty will be represented. Social justice campaign groups will also be in attendance, including those focusing on environmental issues and others tackling violence against women as well as racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination.

“This is our first chance for UK occupiers to get to know each other. We are aware that Occupy London has received more than its fair share of attention – lots of people don’t even know that there are other occupations in the UK,” said Jenny Atkinson of Occupy London. “Its time for that to change. That is why we want to get everyone together, so that we can do more to support our fellow occupiers.

“With the news about Northern Rock, the timing of this conference is also key. We are seeing the authorities and banks focusing again on the elite with cheap sales of assets favouring the rich one per cent, rather than those truly affected by the crisis – like those stuck with increasing negative equity as falling house prices hit those with Northern Rock mortgages.”

Notes

[1] UK-Ireland Occupations Convention – Agenda
[2] BBC – Up to 40,000 people in Sheffield ‘trapped by debt‘:
[3] Nearest tubes for the Occupy London Stock Exchange (OccupyLSX) site are St. Pauls, Mansion House and Canon Street; buses 4, 11, 15, 23, 25, 26, 100, 242; do check Transport For London website for delays and closures. The Occupy London Finsbury Square (OccupyLFS) site is near Moorgate; buses 141, 153, 205, 21, 214, 43
[4] On Sunday 16th October at an assembly of over 500 people on the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral, Occupy London collectively agreed an initial statement. Please note, like all forms of direct democracy, the statement will always be a work in progress.
[5] Bringing together a diverse range of people, Occupy London’s Stock Exchange, Finsbury Square (OccupyLFS) and Bank of Ideas are part of more than 30 occupations happening in towns and cities across the UK and over 1,000 actions worldwide coming together under the banner of “United For Global Change” calling for true democracy. Occupy London is supported by groups including UK Uncut, the London-based Assembly of the Spanish 15M movement and many others. It has already received phenomenal interest, from the public and media in the UK and around the world, with the OccupyLSX facebook group now more than 31,000 members.
[6] More information on UK occupations

Occupy London ‘repossesses’ multi-million pound bank offices

Repost from occupylsx

- First building for the economic justice campaigners as they occupy third space in borough of Hackney, alongside existing spaces in the City of London and borough of Islington

- New ‘Bank of Ideas’ open to public this Saturday. Offices and meeting rooms will be available for those that have lost their nurseries, community centres and youth clubs due to savage Government spending cuts

Occupy London has taken over a huge abandoned office block in the borough of Hackney belonging to the investment bank UBS in a move it describes as a ‘public repossession.’ [1]

Overnight on Thursday, a dozen activists from the Occupy London, campaigners for social and economic justice as part of the global fight for real democracy, gained access to the building and secured it, giving them a legal claim on the space.

The multimillion pound complex, which has been empty for several years, is the group’s third space and its first building, adding to its two camps at St Paul’s Courtyard – near the London Stock Exchange in the heart of the City – and at Finsbury Square (borough of Islington).

Occupy London supporter Jack Holburn said: “Whilst over 9,000 families were kicked out of their homes in the last three months for failing to keep up mortgage payments – mostly due to the recession caused by the banks – UBS and others financial giants are sitting on massive abandoned properties.

“As banks repossess families’ homes, empty bank property needs to be repossessed by the public. Yesterday we learned that the Government has failed to create public value out of banking failure. We can do better. We hope this is the first in a wave of ‘public repossessions’ of property belonging to the companies that crashed the global economy.”

The Bank of Ideas
The group say the space will be reopened on Saturday morning as the ‘Bank of Ideas.’ [2] An events programme is being lined up, including talks from Palestinian activists, comedy from Josie Long and a session led by trader Alessio Rastani, who sent shockwaves through the media following a provocative interview on the Eurozone crisis. [3]

Sarah Layler of Occupy London added: “The Bank of Ideas will host a full events programme where people will be able to trade in creativity rather than cash. We will also make space available for those that have lost their nurseries, community centres and youth clubs to savage Government spending cuts.”

The Bank of Ideas is a non-residential occupation – so visitors are asked not to bring their sleeping bags. Space will be free from drugs and alcohol from the start, as per Occupy London’s safer space policy.[4]

Notes

1 The complex is owned by Sun Street Properties Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of UBS. The property includes 5-29 Sun Street, 5-17 Crown Place, 8-16 Earl Street and 54 Wilson Street. See dl.dropbox.com/u/136370/bankofideas/ubs…, http://dl.dropbox.com/u/136370/bankofideas/shoreditch-ubs.PDF, dl.dropbox.com/u/136370/bankofideas/pla…, http://dl.dropbox.com/u/136370/bankofideas/os-map.pdf and dl.dropbox.com/u/136370/bankofideas/lan…

2 www.bankofideas.org.uk

3 www.youtube.com/watch?v=aC19fEqR5bA

4 occupylsx.org/?page_id=1214

5 UBS Bank, which describes itself as a ‘premier global financial services firm offering wealth management, investment banking, asset management and business banking services’ was the subject of a $60bn bailout from the Swiss government in 2008 after piling up the biggest losses of any European lender from the global credit crisis. Since the time, the bank has cut thousands of jobs.

In September, a 31-year old trader at UBS was arrested by City of London police in connection with rogue trading that has cost the bank an estimated $2bn. The New York Times wrote an article in response called ‘At UBS, It’s the Culture That’s Rogue’ (see www.nytimes.com/2011/09/24/business/glo…? pagewanted=all)

The Financial Mail ran the headline ‘UBS grabs £1bn from pensioners’ with reference to a controversial form of secured lending that was sold aggressively to pensioners (see dl.dropbox.com/u/136370/bankofideas/ubs….)

The bank has nine offices in the UK including three in London.

A recent report showed a total of 9,200 homes in the UK were repossessed by banks in the third quarter of the year, a rise on the previous three months (see www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-15672123). Figures are expected to deteriorate further.

5 Nearest tubes for the Occupy London Stock Exchange (OccupyLSX) site are St. Pauls, Mansion House and Canon Street; buses 4, 11, 15, 23, 25, 26, 100, 242; do check Transport For London website for delays and closures at journeyplanner.tfl.gov.uk/user/XSLT_TRI…. The new Bank of Ideas is just down the road from the Occupy London Finsbury Square (OccupyLFS) space, which is near Moorgate; buses 141, 153, 205, 21, 214, 43

6 On Sunday 16th October at an assembly of over 500 people on the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral, Occupy London collectively agreed the initial statement below. Please note, like all forms of direct democracy, the statement will always be a work in progress. Details at occupylsx.org/?page_id=575

7 Bringing together a diverse range of people, Occupy London’s Stock Exchange, Finsbury Square (OccupyLFS) and Bank of Ideas are part of more than 30 occupations happening in towns and cities across the UK and over 1,000 actions worldwide coming together under the banner of “United For Global Change” calling for true democracy. Occupy London is supported by groups including UK Uncut, the London-based Assembly of the Spanish 15M movement and many others. It has already received phenomenal interest, from the public and media in the UK and around the world, with the OccupyLSX facebook group now more than 31,000 members.

6 More information on UK occupations at www.occupybritain.co.uk/protest-details

OccupyLFS Party and new Facebook page

photo by Hugh Hill

After a long week we are having an impromptu party. Music will be improvised and nothing will begin before the end of the General Assembly.

Please be aware of our Safe Spaces Policy and make sure everyone has a good time. Bring yourselves.

The event page is here.

The ‘Occupy London Finsbury Square’ page is here.

Update 17 Nov

Tent City University and the Occupied Times have new homes

There are now two new marquees to house our Tent City University and the Occupied Times. The Occupied Times will be sharing their marquee with the ‘in construction’ Radio Occupy coming to some airwaves near you.

Waste Management

We would like to thank London Community Resource Network for donating their resources to help us with our recycling and general waste management.

Woodchipping

We now have woodchipping on the majority of the communal space on camp. This is to ensure the maintaining of the ground.

Energy

In order to comply with Islington Council’s request to use a diesel rather than petrol, we have sourced a diesel generator that will be up and running by the start of next week. This is part of an ongoing effort to make the site both safer and more energy efficient.

As part of this effort we have put in place a four phase programme:

  1. Diesel Generator
  2. Low energy lighting
  3. Battery Bank
  4. Solar (and other alternative energy sources)

Voices from the Occupation – 17 Nov 2011

A Day in the Life of Occupy London

While the City of London Corporation was busy sticking eviction notices on the tents of peaceful people standing for a better world, the Occupy London crew were carrying on regardless.  This article gives you report and footage take at St Paul’s and Finsbury Square camps through Wednesday 16th November 2011.

Take a look around, breathe it in…this is what democracy looks like.

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