, , ,

So the Occupy lot have reclaimed a disused building from UBS and it is really refreshing to see a disused building being put to good use. Surely Cameron should be commending them for putting his ‘Big Society’ into practice! Whilst I don’t necessarily agree with the generalisation and vagueness of the occupy movement (most sensible people had despised capitalism for decades), I do admire that they are actually doing something practical that may make a difference to the community around them.

The Bank of Ideas is situated on Sun Street, Hackney in an abandoned office block purchased several years ago by the bank UBS. It is an enormous space complete with a 500-seater lecture hall.

It has been opened to the public for the non-monetary trade of ideas to help solve the pressing economic, social and environmental problems of our time.

There is also room for community groups, youth clubs, nurseries and other public services that have lost their space due to Government spending cuts.

Artists, performers and creatives are welcome to come entertain and to help transform the space. We also encourage games, workshops and skillshares on anything from yoga to yahtzee.

The only prerequisite is that this space is not for financial transactions. Trade in ideas or skills, but no one should need to pay to take part in the Bank’s activities.

Everyone should feel safe and welcome in the Bank.  Our Safer Spaces Policy asks people to be mindful and respectful of how their ideas or actions might effect others, and there is a No Drugs and Alcohol Policy. As this is a public space any damage or disrespect to the property would be an act of disrespect and violence towards your own community, a community trying to come together to find positive solutions to our current crises. We ask all people who come into the space to come in with respect.

Everyone is warmly welcome and encouraged to come and be part of creating the Bank of Ideas. Email us with your ideas, suggestions and requests at bankofideaslondon@gmail.com.

There are many organisations that have existed for years purely to support the community but one of the major issues is always funding . Why can’t more disused buildings be simply given to the local community groups in order to allow them to develop and grow.

Capitalism is not going to be destoyed because a few tents cause inconvenience but it’s great watching all those feathers get rustled. Good luck to one and all in the Occupy movement and hope you don’t meet the same treatment as those in Wall Street.