Bristol: Operation Rhone and the Badger hunt

Note: Since this article was published Bristol anarchist Emma Sheppard was sentenced to 2 years in prison in relation to criminal damage of police cars, as part of Operation Rhone. See letter from Em for more info.

When Bristol anarchist Huw ‘Badger’ Norfolk legged it somewhere in late-August 2011, word spread fast across Bristol’s anarchist & radical communities. His decision to absent himself from all and any police investigations was immediately apparent to the many friends he’d had no time to say good-bye to. No doubt many suspected this escape to somewhere would be short-lived. Instead nothing, just the one shout-out from online anonymity(1) two months later, in which he stated his non-compliance bluntly.

Fast-forwards to December 2014 and Badger’s face is staring at us from every national and many local media outlets. Crimestoppers and Avon & Somerset Police’s Operation Rhone announce a £10k reward for information, whilst forcing his parents in north-west Bristol into the media spotlight too(2). Badger is wanted for two specific actions, although no evidence is cited for either. It’s made clear the Badger hunt, and the two actions, are just a part of their investigation into over 100 actions by ‘persons unknown’(3) over the last four years. [Read More]

UK: Why did the Bristol Stokes Croft Riot Happen? A Community-Based View of Events

Why did the Bristol Stokes Croft Riot Happen? A Community-Based View of Events (April Bank Holiday, 2011)
We attempt to tell the story of what happened through the eyes of local people building up a picture of the chain of events which led to a riot close to the centre of Bristol. As well as testament filmed over the subsequent days we also include footage from the unrest. We also hope this will help in the understanding of why it happened.
https://vimeo.com/22968797

Bristol riots: Police tactics questioned after second night of violence in Stokes Croft

Questions are being asked as to why a peaceful protest descended into violence on Thursday night in Stokes Croft.

From around 9pm onwards crowds had gathered for a previously-cancelled protest against alleged police brutality during the riots a week earlier before violence broke out at around 1am.

Protesters stood outside the Telepathic Heights squat – the scene of a police raid which sparked last week’s violence – playing music while several police vans waited cautiously nearby.

According to police reports, mounted officers and riot police moved in at around 1am after a small group began throwing bottles at officers. [Read More]

Bristol (UK) – Stokes Croft Riot after massive police raid against Telepathic Heights squat

Stokes Croft Riot after massive police raid against Telepathic Heights squat

April 21, 2011. 10pm. A riot starts after a 160 strong multi-regional police force coordinated assault shuts down a district and breaks down the door of a squat named ‘Telepathic Heights’ in Bristol.

The cops then violently harass local people and get attacked in return. Telepathic Heights is in the busy cultural area of Stokes Croft, Bristol, where there are many bars, cafes, squats, community projects, etc. 300 people fight the police for hours and hours in response to the police occupation of the neighbourhood. A corporate supermarket is looted and destroyed, whilst none of the other (independently-owned) shops on the streets are touched in the disturbance.

[Read More]

Bristol: Update on Classics and Emporium

We’re still going!

Possession has been granted to Jerwood Trading Ltd from the 5th of May 2011. This means that bailiffs can arrive with the lawyers of Jerwood at any time from that date. They plan to auction off the buildings through the auctioneers Maggs and Allen.

Meanwhile we are in negotiations with the lawyers of Jerwood with a view to buying the property off them. We have formed a legal co-op that will administrate it all. The last valuation of the buildings was negative£100,000, which puts us in quite a good position. People seem to want the freeshop and emporium to keep going so this is an avenue we are hoping will succeed. [Read More]

Bristol: Emporium and Classics still alive and well

Update on legal threat to 35/37 Stokes Croft

People that know and use the spaces have been asking for an update on the legal situation with 35/37 Stokes Croft so we’d thought we’d get a little summary out.
We are still going! There are exhibitions and events coming up at the emporium and the free shop continues its regular opening times of Thursday to Saturady 2pm-5pm.

Our next court appearance will be Thursday 7th of April.

We haven’t actually spoken to any ‘owner’, even their lawyers laugh at the fact that he/she might not exist. The claim in court is that the owners are Hong Kong businessmen, and company records have been produced to attempt to confirm this. We have attempted to speak to them but there has been no reply. Only through an estate agents (Maggs and Allen) and a law firm (Awdry, Douglas and Bailey) have we ascertained more information, which is not wholely reliable as they are trying to make money out of an abandoned building and have been trying every trick in the book to make a quick buck. Here’s updates on what’s happened so far. [Read More]

UK: Squat Crackdown, Bristol Fashion

Autonomous society in Bristol is under serious threat as eviction faces the Stokes Croft Free Shop and Emporium, Frowning Motorcycle events space, Smiling Chair anarchist library, and three other squat houses. In a move that will effectively mean making 60-70 people homeless, the bailiffs have been getting busy all around Stokes Croft.

The anarchist library was hit by ‘heavies’ on Monday 8th,who started putting metal sheeting over doors and windows whilst people were still inside. The illegal bailiffs were quickly dispatched by the coppers, having been called in by the occupants, for attempting to imprison the squatters inside. Later the same night the Frowning Motorcycle events space, which is also home to 5 people, was targeted by more illegal bailiffs trying to crowbar their way in. Luckily, the space was secure and they left without gaining access. [Read More]