Anarchist Book Fair

anarchist bookfair flyer image

Colette & Emma from the DIY Space collective will be at the Anarchist Bookfair at Queen Mary this coming Saturday the 18th, handing out flyers and talking to anyone who is interested. If you’ve got any questions, or want to get involved with the co-operative, feel free to come and have a chat.

The book fair is from 10-7 at Queen Mary, University of London, Mile End Rd, E1 4NS. The building is accessible and the event is open to children, although the fair does get very popular and crowded at times. Guide dogs are allowed, but no other dogs.

Here’s the flyer with more info.

NME article about Diy Space For London

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This week in the NME, our very own Bryony Beynon was interviewed by Charlotte Richardson Andrews, along with some other people involved in running DIY venues, including our favourites Power Lunches and Wharf Chambers, and new spaces JT Soar and Unity Works.

Here’s a scanned pdf of the article. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem to be available on the NME website, so for accessibility reasons the pdf is set up so the text is text rather than an image, but some of the layout confuses screen readers a little.

PDF of the NME article

Hey, we need a space!

Print

DIY Space for London has now raised £13,000 but doesn’t have a building.
For more information, and the criteria needed for the space, go here.

If you want to help out by printing some posters and putting them somewhere useful in London, then the files are below. The poster is available in red, orange, green and black, and the page size is A3 (but of course can be scaled down to A4 and is still readable and clear). Just right click and save them once you’ve opened them.

Red version
Green version
Orange version
Black version

NEXT MEETING THIS SUNDAY

Next DSFL Meeting This Sunday
Our next meeting is happening on Sunday 20th July at 4pm. We’ll be meeting up at the Southbank Centre (the Lower Mezzanine on Level 4 Blue; map’s here, nearest tube’s Waterloo). This meeting’ll be all about discussing potential buildings, exchanging leads and scheduling viewings for those that seem most promising. We’ll also be chatting about finances, press opportunities, appointing Directors and seeing which of you lot fancies planning a bar… So if you want to help us with finding a space for DIY Space, then please come along. If you can’t make it but have some information on a sweet space that we should know about, then let us know through the Google Group or by emailing us.

HELP US FIND A BUILDING

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Exciting news for the future of DIY Space for London! We now have £13,000.00 and rising in cleared donations, including our grant from Edge Fund, regular monthly donations from Friends of DSFL and other benefit initiatives. As such, our attention has now shifted from fundraising to space finding. We have seen some impressive properties, but none so far has been The One. So, we are continuing with our search and would like to appeal for your help. There are lots of ways to get involved with helping us to find a home for DSFL, and at the moment we’re very interested in knowing of any properties or spaces that might suit us. The brief is open in terms of location as we’re keen to know what is out there at this stage.

Wishlist:

  • Minimum approx. 90 sqm/950 sqft of internal space (ideally more)
  • Level throughout / with a main space with level access
  • Compliance with safety regulations with regard to fire safety or potential to bring up to regulation with minimal work
  • Reasonable proximity to accessible public transport, with safe, secure and well lit routes to and from the premises
  • Ability to permit change of use to a private members’ club
  • A (relatively) non-residential location
  • Accessible toilets or space to install them
  • Rent c. £2500.00 PCM

If you happen to see or know of a property that you think might meet our specifications, please get in touch by email at diyspaceforlondon@gmail.com even just with a link or some info about what you’ve seen, and we will make sure to check it out! Also, if you have any expertise with regard to commercial leasing and property in general please feel free to get in touch with any information you think might be useful.

Join a Working Group!

Would you like to get more involved in DSFL? We’re now officially incorporated as a IPS Society (Cooperative) and have a number of working groups that focus on different areas and report into general meetings. These email lists are open to everyone, so why not sign up?

Fundraising (for putting on gigs and helping raise cash) Join here
Space-finders (the very active intrepid property search team) Join here
Outreach & comms (for flyering, press and media!) Join here
Steering group (co-op members and general admin junkies) Join here
General volunteers (we’ll put the call out here when it’s all hands on deck!) Join here

OPEN MEETING THIS SUNDAY

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Thanks, Joanna Gruesome!

Over the last eighteen months we’ve been supported in many different ways by a huge range of individuals, groups, and funding initiatives, from benefit gigs and festivals to flyering and awareness raising. Cardiff-based band Joanna Gruesome recently gave a generous donation to the project and had this to say about it:

“We think DIY space for London is totally worth supporting because it feels bizarre (yet logistically understandable) that London doesn’t currently have a autonomous, ethically minded, radical place to organise projects, see shows, go to events or just hang out.  Places like Wharf Chambers, JT SOAR and Audacious Art Space continue to prove that these spaces are not only socially important, but are also just fun,comfortable environments with huge amounts of personality and spirit. I know a ton of people who would benefit from the existence of a similar space in London (including ourselves) and we’re humbled to be in a position to help support the project. It’ll rule!” – Joanna Gruesome on DIY Space for London

Here’s some live footage of the band..

…and here’s your next chance to catch them at another DIY Space for London fundraiser gig on February 7th at Powerlunches:

Grant-making with a difference – notes from the Edge (Fund) …

On Saturday 11th January 2014 we were awarded a £1500 grant from Edge Fund!

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This is our first non-donated/fundraised income and it means a lot to us for it to come from a funding org run by and for radical groups working on social change. Two representatives from DIY Space for London attended an interactive, democratic funding decision making session which lasted the whole day. It was a really special one for a lot of reasons. Here’s a little bit about what went down..

We arrived at 10.30am to a community centre in Finsbury Park. We were a bit nervous to meet so many new people at once but abundant tea and biscuits and a plunge into Ye Olde Icebreaker, which soon put paid to our worries.

Migrant and refugee organising was well-represented across a range of campaigns including Lesbian Immigration Support (from Manchester) Anti-Raids Network and UK Chagos Refugee Support. Some projects, like Reel News and  Green and Black Cross were looking for funding to buy new equipment or redesign their website, while others like Brighton Anti-Fascists were looking for help with budgeting for community outreach projects. The space-based projects like ours and Common House, a meeting space for radical groups based in Bethnal Green (excited to visit soon!) Regardless of their focus, every single person who spoke showed their passion and commitment clearly in the two- minute speech we all gave as an intro.

After this we split into two groups and created stalls where everyone in attendance, including shortlisted orgs, previously funded orgs and Edge Fund members, could quiz each other about their projects, based on previously disseminated info from the simple application form Edge ask for. DIY Space for London as a project was something a lot of people felt interested in, and were keen to offer their thoughts about how to make the space as accessible as possible, how to genuinely connect with the area in which the space will be, how to create a robust but workable system around safer spaces concerns, how to find an affordable commercial lease and how to balance realism with what can sometimes feel like a utopian demand (!). To be bombarded with such productive and informed positive and support was genuinely brilliant, a little overwhelming at times, but very exciting. We had to ask ourselves some tough questions and worked on the answers together with our new friends.

Then, after a break for delicious soups, breads and salads, we sat down to begin assigning scores. This is grant-making with a radical difference – everyone in the room was given a cup of chickpeas (uncooked!) and offered the chance to assign each group up to five chickpeas. The lowest amount a group would receive would be £1,500 (no small fry in itself!) with the maximum being up to £4,500 for one group. Together through chickpeas it was decided that the vital work of Lesbian Immigration Support would be the group to receive this amount. The whoop that went up (not just from that group!) when this was announced, and the sense of positive encouragement was great to see. I left with a to-read and to-do list as long as my arm, and a real sense of having make connections with people who care about the same things as we do, a pool of resources we can build together.

Overall, the day was an inspiring example of building an alternative funding model that really works. they are looking to grow their pot of money, this was round three and while the initial gift that the fund was founded on has got them this far, and enabled one of their members to be a part-time employee of the Fund, they need donations to continue the model and keep it moving forward. Check out their site here for more info about supporting and joining in for £1!

As for DSFL, £1500 is going to make a huge difference, bringing our fundraising total to just over £11,000! We’re about to announce the date of our next OPEN MEETING. It’s been a year since the first one, now it’s time to make this happen!

Some updates and new things!

Hi all, here are a few fundraising events and things:

Another Subculture #1 fanzine tape

Featuring interviews, music and more – all profits from which go to DIY Space For London.
Purchase here: http://anothersubculture.bandcamp.com/

To find out about the slew of the new years fundraising gigs coming up (including Girl Germs’ NYE party!) see the benefits page.

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