good for bristol

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Bristol squatters visit Gremlin Alley, Cardiff

Gremlin Alley is a squatted cinema on City Road in Cardiff.  We drove up on a visit on Saturday, 3 November 2012.  It's a good crew who've occupied the place and they deserve lots of support.

Seen one derelict cinema and you've seen 'em all, the squatted one in Cardiff was pretty much what I expected.  Big walls, lots of space and a very closed feel.  Surprisingly little damp inside - the roof is holding up well.

Getting in was a laugh, lots of banging and kicking on the door before a balaclaved head stuck out of window, a door opened and we were hustled in.  Heh - easier than getting into the Free Shop on Stokes Croft!

 It's a big building in generally good condition and the squatters are looking after it well.  No piles of rotting rubbish, accumulated useless tat or mindlessly smashed doors or walls.  Lots of graffiti but of a decent standard.

It's a young crew - reminded me of our lot back in the 1990s - holding things together well.  They're a determined bunch and have barricaded the building solidly, it's going to take a lot to get them out of there.  The core group is fairly small but they've got a wider circle of supporters coming and going.  We liked them a lot, they were for real not the posing anarchos I'd been half expecting.

I think they deserve a lot of support.  They've got a blog with news, info and contact details on it.  Mostly I think they need money and people although they're a rightly careful bunch so if you're going up there ring first and talk through who you are and why you're interested.

Young people are getting totally shafted at the moment.  The rest of us are having it rough but the next generation are having their benefits stripped, put on workfare, being criminalised and basically having their futures shat on.  It's good to meet a bunch who are crewing up, sticking together and making a go of it.

Cheers to the Gremlins for showing us round and TG for the lift there!

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