Following the eviction of Rampart, the collective has now moved to the Lift n’ Hoist at 1 Queens Row in Walworth SE17
Our website is now at http://liftnhoist.ucrony.net
Priests and Chainsaws Revisited
At 5am on Thursday, 15th October, 2009, the rampART Creative Centre and Social Space was evicted by 45 police with chainsaws and, remarkably, a Church of England vicar. Three people and a dog were inside.
The eviction marks the end of nearly five and a half years of occupation, during which rampART has served as a landmark for the social centres movement in London and a venue for a diverse range of events including political meetings, workshops, info cafes, fundraising parties and the London Freeschool.
The eviction, significantly, happened on the same day that Non Commercial House, a freeshop operating out of a building in nearby Commercial Street, lost their case against eviction and a week after the collective occupying 2a Belgrade Road in Stoke Newington successfully defended the space from eviction by council bailiffs.
15.10.2009 – 10:21
RampArt Social Centre was evicted at 5:30am this morning by 45 police, bailiffs and a priest.
After over 5 years and many eviction scares it has finally happened… 3 people and a dog were inside when police attempted to chainsaw the door. They also had climbers going up to the roof conjuring up memories of the raid during the G20 in April. Police are blocking the entrance to all three roads leading to the social centre with vans and their bodies. They are handing out a piece of paper with a telephone number to call to get belongings out of the building. A meeting will happen at Non Commercial House freeshop at 165 Commercial Street this evening, details to follow soon.
Friday 13th March 2009
Yesterday there was an eviction attempt by owners at Rampart. It was a long battle but we are now back in full occupancy of the building. A big thank you to all those who came out in support. We want to have as many people in the building as we can in order to discourage another eviction attempt and we are calling out for your help with this.
If you can help with an occupation rota, or want to give us your phone number to be added to an eviction alert phone tree, please get in contact with us at
Briefly what happened, there had been a fire the night before in the building next door to Rampart. Yesterday at 11.30am, two suited men impersonating fire brigade inspectors demanded to be allowed in to inspect the building for fire damage. They were allowed in to be accompanied around the building. Upon entering the building three security guards appeared and followed after them. The two men, who were in fact agents acting on behalf of the owners, and the guards told the Rampart member and guest present to leave but they refused. A police officer arrived at the doorway and threatened the Rampart member and guest with arrest for having crossed a crime scene (the street had been cordoned off due to the fire) and for breach of the peace if they did not leave. The member and guest again refused to leave. Finally the security guards AND the police officer violently forced both of them out of the building.
Just over a week ago an unused building in East London was occupied by a group of international artists and activists with the aim of opening up a new social space. The building has been secured, tided up and some essential repairs made. The rampart was born…
The Rampart will provide a rampant meeting and workshop space, free internet access, info shop, community cinema, vokue/cafe, extensive free shop, art gallery and theatre space… The building contains a cosy hall in which a stage has been built and the whole place decorated.
The Ramparts is really close to LARC, Freedom Book, the Hacklab and a squatted environmental project, and we’ll be avoiding duplicating the stuff they already provide while adding to the diversity of autonomous projects in the area.
This coming friday (21st), there will be an opening event, consisting of screenings performance, live music, poetry slam/open mic in the ramparts hall. If you would like to get involved on the night, please let us know ASAP. We also hope to do food but currently don’t have cooking tat to cater for large numbers (we need big pots, and loads of plates/bowls/mugs and cuttlery).