Saturday night I attended my second “free party”. The first went off pretty much without a hitch, after arriving at a “rendezvous” point we were walked in a group of 50 – 100 people down the road to an empty warehouse.
The doors to this warehouse were opened and all people early enough to get to the “rendezvous” point were aloud entry. A number of transit vans followed in the revellers and 3 rigs were set up.
I have never attended this kind of event before and was murky as far as the law goes. The first police turned up to this particular event at 2am and by 3am there were upwards of 6 TAU police vans at the venue. The officers eventually entered the venue at around 5 when they “checked” the venue.
I have no idea what they were checking and how, but this particular venue clearly passed the tests and the party was aloud to continue until 9am when enough people had dispersed and the police were able to put enough pressure on the people remaining to end the party.
This Saturday the police response was very different:
Does anybody know what the difference between the raves could have been? I have been offered a number of different suggestions but none have been convincing.
#1 People - Only a small number of people had gained entry to the event, many more were on the streets around the venue, could there be an amount of police required to “evict” people from a property? Say, 1 officer per 5 people?
#2 Safety – Maybe the venue was deemed dangerous and this was why the police used such physical measures to make sure the event didn’t happen.
#3 Squatters - I have heard people throw around “squatter’s rights”, apparently there were people who “lived” in the venue, could they have squatter’s rights? How would this effect the rights of the people attending the party (apparently all people were removed from the property, including those previously living there).
#4 It was Huge!! – This particular event was going to be huge. 800+ people were on the streets around the event and many more would have arrived following club kicking out, there were plans for a BBQ and even a fairground ride, could this effect the reaction of the police, perhaps teaching the organisers a lesson?
I’m sorry if people have a problem with this kind of talk and I am in no way trying to show off that I was at a rave that never happened I am just interested in what the law says and even opinions of these kind of events.
Has anybody previously been to an event like this? Did it go ahead? Was it dangerous? Was the venue trashed?
I hear no end of stories from the 30+ year old friends claiming that these “free parties” were the centre of clubbing back in the early days and that, had it not been for a law created to stop it the “super clubs” in big cities with £5 drinks could/would have never happened.
I would love more information on this kind of thing, from either a legal, social or historical point of view.
Please enlighten me; I cannot decide if this was a massive overreaction by the police or if the guidelines in place leave no options for this type of action in these types of circumstance.