Cuts cafe is a squatted space. We are proud that we will be taking one of the many properties left empty throughout London by profit-hungry speculators or negligent local councils, and transforming it from a sight of dereliction and misery into a vibrant community hub.
Some people may be worried about the legality or image of squatting. The law around squatting has indeed changed recently, but this only applies to residential buildings. Cuts Cafe is in a commercial property and we are not in any breach of any criminal law by being there. The issue of trespass remains a civil matter between us and the property owner.
It cannot be stated enough – visiting Cuts Cafe is not a crime!
Furthermore, squatting an abandoned building is an act of resistance to the cuts themselves. Our libraries and community centres are being closed all around us, our parks are being sold off. We are being squeezed out of whatever social housing remains, and pushed out of rented properties by cuts to our housing benefit.
In the face of such blatant theft of our space and homes by the state and private developers, the only response can be to take back what rightly belongs to us, the people, even if only for two weeks.