Dignity under the Hammer: Protest at Sotheby’s auction house

1 July at 7pm 34-35 New Bond Street, London W1A 2AA

sotheby's protest cover picThis protest will coincide with a Contemporary Art Evening Auction scheduled to start at 7pm .The combined estimated value of the paintings to be sold that evening comes to £353,000,000 (£353 million)

A few months ago the grass-roots trade union United Voices of the World (UVW) successfully campaigned at Sotheby’s and won the London Living Wage, contractual sick pay, the reinstatement of their trade union members that had been suspended and dismissed and many other things.

Now Sotheby’s and their cleaning contractor Servest have refused to pay up!

At the moment the cleaners and porters are only paid Statutory Sick Pay, which is £35 for the first week they are off sick. This means they are faced with the Dickensian choice between working and sick and getting sicker or risking eviction for not being able to pay the rent.

A choice between their health and their home is not a choice anyone should have to make!

In response to the cleaners’ and porters’ campaign Servest threatened to discipline them if they were to protest. In fact, a trade union member and a key organiser of the campaign is currently victimised and faces dismissal procedures. This is a direct attack to the human rights, enshrined in Articles 10&11 of the European Convention on Human rights.

Find out more here

Please join the cleaners and porters in solidarity on the 1st July. Lets make it a creative and noisy poorest! Please also spread the word.

June 20 Anti Austerity Demo + Creche


Creche in the Common House

June 20 @ 8:00 am – 7:00 pm

For J20 Plan C and friends are co-ordinating a creche for parents and carers who want to join the march. More details to follow but the general gist is that parents will be able to drop off their kids and collect at the of the end of day. We will have playworkers and other parents at Common House all day.

On June 20, Common House will be open – all those that are unable to march – for diverse and multiple reasons – are welcome to come and join in taking action – caring for kids, doing media, keeping our comrades safe on the streets, providing a space to recharge batteries and keep each other safe.

contact london@weareplanc.org.uk for more information.

Visuals Against the Housing Crisis

June 14 @ 2:30 pm – 7:00 pm

Visuals Against the Housing Crisis
June 13th and 14th 2015
Organised by the Propagate Collective and No.w.here
Location: No.w.here / Common House, Bethnal Green
Time: 11:00–18:00

All over the UK and most visibly in London we are facing an unprecedented wave of gentrification with a rise in house prices, and rents, evictions of families and sell-offs of public housing. We believe that political communication is capable of making the issue bold and visible, showing the different forces involved in the rise of housing prices, social cleansing and displacement of working families from edgy areas and to mobilise people.
This event calls for residents, activists, artists and designers to come together for a weekend of workshops about how to communicate the housing crisis and the politics of gentrification. The workshop aims to enable participants to express their anger and demands through discussion and creativity, develop them into a visual manifestation that communicates on the streets.
We will be using Risograph Printing to mass produce our voices and distribute them wide and loud. You don’t have to be an artist or a designer to take part! Participants should come with ideas and images and be prepared to discuss them collectively and work in collaboration to develop these ideas into visual form.
We will shortly circulate a programme of the event. In the meantime please book your free place via eventbrite. Spaces for the workshop are limited.


Politics in Love, Sex & Relationships

May 31 @ 4:00 am – 7:00 pm

A monthly discussion, peer support, and solidarity group (usually last Sunday of each month) concentrating on thinking and practicing relationships “differently” (that usually means we talk a lot about relationship anarchy, ethical non-monogamy, relationships that don’t conform to the “relationship escalator” idea or other ideas promoted by the capitalist heteropatriarchy.)

The purpose of the group is to discuss issues and learn from each other on a more general level (sometimes with the help of lighter reading material, such as short articles and blog pieces), and also peer support and solidarity – so not just theoretical abstract discussions! Our feeling was that for a lot of people doing relationships differently can be quite difficult, with little support and guidance in people around you and in the media, and so it would be great if we could provide this for each other. After each meeting, we will aim to also go to the pub together for a chance to get to know each other more.

Everyone is welcome to attend. We strive to make this group a safer space for people who are often excluded and marginalised in public spaces and groups. Common House is accessible by wheelchair (no steps inside), but unfortunately the toilet is not. Do let us know if you have other needs either in advance or on the day and we will try to sort something out!

Do let us know if you want to suggest discussion topics, hold a workshop, do an exercise, do a performance or anything else on the subject of doing relationships “differently”.

For more information and the safer spaces agreement please join the Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1592877634269091/ or email us at pilsargroup@gmail.com

Name of contact person:
Marta Owczarek

Contact phone number:

Occupy Film Night + Social


May 22 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm

This month, in honour of Reclaim the Power’s climate action camp, we will be screening…

Just Do It, the acclaimed feature documentary from director Emily James, goes behind the scenes of the world of climate activism. This one-of-a-kind film charts the adventures of the daring troublemakers who have crossed the line to become modern-day outlaws.

Here’s a teaser…


Autonomous Tech Fetish – Open Session

May 9 @ 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Autonomous Tech Fetish’s open sessions are spaces for sharing, collaboration and co-education in relation to technology, politics and power. Feel free to drop in at any point – each month we will have a loose activity, but are very happy to adapt to whatever being bring and whatever they are interested in.

For the May open session, the focus will be: Skills and Knowledge Sharing. Come with something you’d like to learn, something you’d like to teach, or just show up! It doesn’t have to be related to computing, it could be dancing, craft, organising, anything you like. All forms of knowledge are welcomed and valued.

Kids are welcome! We try to make our activities accessible to all ages and abilities as far as we can, and are happy to provide alternative things to do if appropriate.

Common House is wheelchair accessible but unfortunately the toilet isn’t yet.

About us
Autonomous Tech Fetish probes how digital technology is fetishised and how it can be re-configured to different needs and desires. We work with activist groups to affirm their technological autonomy and are committed to co-education exploring the pitfalls and potentials of technologies without assumptions.

UVW’s protest kicked off at the Common House. A short video.

The cleaners at the Barbican Centre, who are members of the trade union United Voices of the World, recently submitted a collective demand for the London Living Wage and contractural sick pay. In response, MITIE sent in the head of Employee Relations and told the cleaners that if they participated in a protest they would be dismissed.

In defiance of such threats and attack on their human rights, the cleaners courageously called a protest on Saturday 25th April attended by over 60 people armed chants, flyers, flags, drums, megaphones, air horns and vuvuzelas. UVW members from sites such as the British Musuem, the LSE University, Prudential, Sotheby’s, M&S and Topshop were in attendance and fantastic solidarity was shown from representatives from SOAS University Unison branch and from Unite Hotel Workers Branch.

Here a short video of the protest, which kicked off at the Common House. It captures well the community spirit of the group. The common house is a home to many groups and makes organising possible.

Come and join the cleaners’ protest at the Barbican Centre, today Saturday 25th April at 5:30pm

The cleaners of the Barbican Centre are protesting today against MITIE’s disgusting threats to dismiss them if they protest. The cleaners are also demanding the London Living Wage of £9.15 per hour and proper contractual sick pay.

The cleaners at the Barbican Centre are members of the United Voices of the World (UVW) trade union which is a grassroots, member-led union with no paid officials and almost entirely comprised of low paid migrant workers in London’s service sector. After a hard fought for successful campaign for the London Living Wage (LLW) back in 2012/13 (which is the subject of a film called Waging a Living in London) the cleaners are still being paid the old rate of £8.80 per hour.

See more here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1567902353462608/

Come along in solidarity. 4pm at the Common House to have a coffee with us and go together to the Barbican or meet us directly at 5.30pm at the Barbican.

Flyer BC front at 4pm at the Common House to have a coffee and go to the Barbican