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Squatting the Street for 30 years

Janine Wiedel | London, United Kingdom

In December 2005, two hundred riot police moved in and evicted the occupants from 21 of the houses, leaving 150 people homeless overnight. The Rastafarian community house and temple were left standing for a further 2 years. These are the stories of those who lived in the street.

For over 30 years, until its eventual brutal demolition,  twenty four houses in this South London street were squatted by a fluid and diverse range of groups and individuals, who established an autonomous community which functioned outside the bounds of governmental control.

Over the years, this multicultural community provided a refuge and home to thousands of people.  It is often referred to as one of Britain’s most distinctive communities due to its unusual melting pot of people, many of whom have fallen through the net of society yet managed to form a fluid, stabilising and caring community outside the mainstream.
The street is also a well-known Rastafarian enclave with the International  Rastafarian Headquarters, a temple and the Rastafarian Community Centre. In the mid 70’s Bob Marley spent much of his time there and often played football in the street.



Between 2003 and 2007, I  documented this South London back street, notable for its status as the longest running squat in London.

Included here is a small selection from an extensive body of photographs and interviews.

Janine Wiedel

email: wiedelphoto@googlemail.com

web site: www.wiedel-photo-library.com

tel. +44 (0)20 8761 1502

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