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From: "Jo Makepeace" (webmaster@schnews.org.uk)
Subject: SchNEWS 632, Friday 16th May 2008
Date: Sat, 17 May 2008 08:22:11 +0100

'Siege of London Road' withstands bailiffs


Early on Monday morning a stand-off was playing itself out on the streets of Brighton as sweating police and bailiffs scratched their meaty chins and wondered what to do as a group of squatters stood defiant, refusing the eviction order handed down to them on the 2nd of May. A large group of intrigued onlookers gathered on the busy road and people driving past beeped their support; as police retaliated with their usual blend of surveillance and harassment, arresting a passer-by seemingly for using deodorant! The occupiers, locked on and barricaded in, weren't intimidated and by late afternoon the police gave up and left them to it.

The Methodist Church on London road was opened up for the Days of Action for Autonomous Spaces and has been used for the first time in years to host workshops, film screenings, free food and prop making. Despite attempts to contact the Methodists, who invest in companies such as BP, GlaxoSmithKline and Nestlé, the Christian corporation refused to honour their pledge to support "community development for justice, especially among the most deprived and poor".

As supplies are hoisted in from supporters by basket, the "siege of London Road" looks set to continue. The occupiers vow to keep using the space for the benefit of the community and have been putting on regular free cafés on the street outside to spread awareness of their cause, as well as related housing and social issues.

* Watch this space for further reports - http://www.myspace.com/88londonroadsquat

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