‘We’re NOT planning an illegal rave’, say Brixton squatters

SQUATTERS have knocked back rumours that they are planning an ‘illegal rave’ in the abandoned Brixton building they are living in.

The floor above the former Joy Shop on Coldharbour Lane, occupied by around 20 squatters, was under surveillance by two police officers at 12pm on July 2.

One squatter, who would only identify herself as Amy, 27, said: “The police have been staked outside our house all day and night since yesterday.

“People have been saying we are going to have an illegal rave. I have no idea who would say that because are not planning anything at all illegal.”

Squatting rave

The old Joy Shop on Coldharbour Lane has been taken over by squatters

The squatters, part of an organised group to support the gay community called the London Queer Social Centre, held a ‘legal and practical workshop’ as part of the ‘opening day’ of the property at 7pm on July 2.

“Most of us are homeless and would be sleeping rough if we weren’t here,” said Amy.

“It’s frustrating and upsetting that some people want us out. There are people who may feel too intimidated to come to our events because of the police outside – they have completely overreacted.”

The police confirmed they were monitoring the address to minimise any potential disruption to nearby residents and businesses.