24 October 2019
Tactics Of Defence
A workshop and discussion on resisting threats to your home led by Ed Daffarn and Lowkey
In the midst of a housing crisis where the wealthy and powerful set the terms for where we live, how do those who are vulnerable to having homes and community spaces taken away fight back – and win?
Join us to hear from radical activists from across the UK, who will be sharing the methods that have resulted in them successfully defending their homes and public spaces against the bulldozer.
A discussion led by Grenfell United’s Ed Daffarn and rapper and activist Lowkey will be followed by a workshop designed for those looking for practical and effective ways of fighting threats to their homes. You will be invited to share experiences and thoughts, ask questions, and collaborate with panel members Eileen Short, Emer Mary-Morris, Toby Laurent Belson and Paul Burnham to create a DIY pamphlet on key tactics of defence, which you can take away at the end.
This is a rallying call – a bold reminder that power does not always win and there are methods that have been used over time – methods we can learn from and build upon – to fight back.
Ed Daffarn has been campaigning on housing issues since 2009. He is co-author of the Grenfell Action Group blog and a member of Grenfell United, the main group representing survivors and bereaved of the Grenfell Tower fire. Lowkey is a British-Iraqi rapper and activist who is a towering figure of the UK hip-hop scene, exploring the inner workings of global power structures, multinationals and their relationships with governments. Eileen Short is part of Defend Council Housing, a tenant led campaign supported by MPs, councillors and trade unions to stop privatisation of council homes. Emer Mary Morris is an activist, political theatre-maker and member of End Deportations Belfast. Toby Laurent Belson is a multidisciplinary community artist, designer and educator. Paul Burnham is Secretary of Haringey Defend Council Housing, working to monitor and oppose housing demolition and privatisation schemes, and campaign for more and better council housing.
Access the Tactics Of Defence pamphlet here.
Photography: Rowan Spray
Season branding: THREAD Design | Illustration: Nur Hannah Wan
24 October 2019
19:00 - 21:30
£6 / £5 (30 & under)
Rapper and Activist
Lowkey is widely regarded as one of UK hip-hop’s finest; his socially conscious approach sets him apart from his contemporaries. After a hiatus which saw the hip-hop artist take time off to focus on studies and activism, he has returned to a different world politically and a country and in a state of flux. He uses his new album 'Soundtrack to the Struggle 2' to shine a light on the inner workings global power structures, multi nationals and their relationships with governments.
Ed Daffarn is a qualified mental health social worker and community activist. He has been involved in many local campaigns in North Kensington highlighting how the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea have sought to turn public buildings over to private profit. Ed lived in Grenfell Tower for twenty years and was the co-author of the Grenfell Action Group blog that gave warnings of the health and safety risks faced by residents in homes managed by the KCTMO. Since the Grenfell Tower fire Ed has been involved in setting up Grenfell United and was vice-Chair of this bereaved and survivors group from 2017-2018. He is currently co-opted onto the Grenfell United committee and is currently involved in fighting for improved housing regulation and a change in the "institutional indifference" faced by community's living in social housing. Ed recently served as a commissioner for Shelter's report into the future of social housing alongside Baroness Lawrence and Ed Miliband.
Emer Mary Morris
Activist and Political Theatre-maker
Emer Mary Morris is a a housing organiser, and political theatre maker, and facilitator. Emer is currently working as a housing organiser with Build Homes Now and Participation and Practice of Rights on land justice in Belfast (PPR). PPR Project is an organisation that supports groups directly affected by issue to take a 'Human Rights Based Approach' to campaigning for change. Previously Emer has been an organiser with Focus E15 Campaign and Radical Housing Network since 2014.
Toby Laurent Belson
Artist and Educator
Toby Laurent Belson is a multidisciplinary community artist, designer and educator. He was born and raised and resides in West London. He has run a community arts group, Brownbaby, in North Kensington since 2007, was a Portobello market trader for 8 years and has held local school governor and Trustee positions. In 2017 and 2018 he led a creative community response for Grenfell at Notting Hill Carnival, and in 2018 produced the Green for Grenfell illuminations, which included the lighting of 12 local tower blocks, many London-wide landmarks and Grenfell Tower itself, to mark one year since the devastating fire. Since 2015 he has dedicated much of his spare time (and then some) to four local campaigns to protect and enhance community assets, supporting them with posters, leaflets, videos, web pages, infographics, zines and regular blog posts and event reports.
Member of Defend Council Housing
Eileen Short is part of Defend Council Housing, a tenant led campaign supported by MPs, councillors and trade unions to stop privatisation of council homes
Secretary of Haringey Defend Council Housing
Paul Burnham is Secretary of Haringey Defend Council Housing, working to monitor and oppose housing demolition and privatisation schemes, and campaign for more and better council housing.
There is step-free access to all areas of Free Word and a number of other facilities available to make the venue accessible.
- Our box office, theatre and hall are all on the ground floor with step-free access from the street
- Meeting rooms and offices are accessible by lift from the ground floor
- There are two accessible toilets on the ground floor
- Hearing loops are available at the box office and the theatre (when set up theatre style) and in all meeting rooms
- If you need to bring someone for assistance, please get in touch with us so we can provide a free ticket for them
Please talk to our team if you have specific access requirements.