UK Club Closures Boost London’s Free Party Scene
Organisers of last weekend’s Vauxhall free party Scum Tek, which descended into violence after riot police clashed with revellers trying to access the unlicensed event, have told Time Out they started their hugely popular parties in response to gentrification.
“It began because this country’s clubs have been refused licences. Small music venues are closing down at a rapid rate,” organisers told the listings magazine.
“Lots of very expensive apartments reside on former clubs (or clubs are earmarked for development into them) and festivals are dwindling.” (Time Out UK )
While most mainstream press accused partygoers of provoking a riot (Vauxhall MP Kate Hoey telling the Standard ‘there seems to be a trend now for serious recreational rioting’) Guardian man on the ground Bradley Garrett accused cops of behaving aggressively and sparking the chaos by hitting a woman from behind as she stood in front of them.
“They turned up in full riot gear and created a huge bottleneck,” said Garrrett, going on to say some officers taunted revellers as they started to disperse.
“The police were saying: ‘What, you’re going home? You don’t want anymore?’” he said. (Guardian)