Newport Action Centre presents: The People’s Kitchen

Tomorrow (28th Sept.) the newly squatted Newport Action Centre (89 Lower Dock St, Pill, NP20 2AH) will open its doors to all for the first time at 11am.index
The Newport People’s Kitchen will serve a free vegan meal to anyone from 12noon to 2pm, with people more than welcome to stay for the whole day, enjoy free tea and coffee, browse the radical library and free shop, or just chat.
There will be a meeting of South Wales Anarchists at 5pm to discuss things like court solidarity and the forthcoming arms fair in Cardiff.
At 7pm there will be a film showing to wind down at the end of the day.
We will not charge for anything on the day, but welcome donations (both financial and material) to help us run the space and make the People’s Kitchen a regular event.
Our wish-list includes: chairs, books, cutlery and feel free to bring any other items you may think are useful to us.
Hope to see you there tomorrow.

Love and rage x

Callout to Demonstrate against 2014 DPRTE Arms Fair.

8.30 am at Cardiff Motorpoint Arena. Wednesday, the 8th of October

“When the rich wage war, it’s the poor who die.” – Jean-Paul Sartre

def proc

On the 8th of October Cardiff will host one of the UK’s biggest arms fairs at the Motorpoint Arena. Let’s show them what we think of their dirty business! We call on people from south Wales and beyond to come and picket outside the arena that day from the time they open for registration at 8.30 am.

DPRTE this year will be attended by some of the UK’s biggest arms companies, as their exhibitor list shows. They also host a conference, with keynote speakers from industry and government.

The arms fair was previously held in Bristol, but was forced out by protests.

We hope to see you there. If you would like to be a legal observer contact us at stopnatocymru@riseup.net . You can also contact us by that email address for any additional information regarding the demonstration

Newport Rises to Action – Statement from new squatted social centre

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Inspired by the recent Week of Action against the NATO Summit in Newport, a group of local activists took control of an abandoned office block on Lower Dock Street, secured the building and now announce their intention to launch a new social centre and creative space for the Newport community.

The Newport Action Centre will host a weekly free vegan café, info-talks, various workshops, skill-shares, an art space and regular events to raise money for local causes, as well as being a home for some of us to run the space from. 

We chose to do all this in a building that has a long history of providing a focal point for local communities and will use consensus and solidarity to prolong that role.

The building – which is directly opposite the passport office – had stood empty for around six months, gathering dust like so many other buildings in Newport while the cost of living continues to rise and forces more and more people towards poverty.

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We chose to reclaim it for community use at a time when 9,500 police had besieged Newport, turning parts of South Wales into open-air prisons and openly flaunting their publicly-funded killing-machines on our streets. We went under the nose of the local police – whose headquarters stands just some meters away – entering the building without causing any damage or disruption and with the intention of liberating a space in increasingly oppressive, suffocating  surroundings.

During the week of the NATO Summit we all got a taste of the power the state has over our lives. They used our money to control our movements with barriers and road closures, filled the skies with helicopters to watch us, and harassed and intimidatedthose who chose to resist the circus of warmongering that was the summit.
It is likely that many of the surveillance measures known to have been taught to Gwent Police – and that we’ve seen imposed upon us – will remain in place long after the Summit is gone, with a recent report from the ‘Newport Business Development Taskforce’ recommending that Newport be turned into a ‘living lab’ for such technologies. The report was written by Simon Gibson, an associate of Terry Matthews, businessmen who have made huge fortunes working closely with arms companies.  The recommended strategy will personally benefit both of them enormously. Despite being a city known for the arts, the old Arts College is now a block of luxury flats – part of a process which is forcing house prices up in Newport – and recently many of the arts courses at the local university have been axed, with talk of specialising in software courses instead. The University building at Caerleon is now also about to be sold, with Terry Matthews probably the first in line to use it to get his hands into more arms and surveillance companies. 

We intend to create an alternative  to these surroundings – a space where people can gather to discuss ideas without fear of being tracked and monitored, be creative without being constrained by social norms, learn outside of a narrowing education system, which fosters competition, and live without being restricted by unnecessary barriers and borders. 

We have already had our first event, where we discussed the impact of the Scottish referendum result, and we plan to open on Sunday September 28th for our first weekly café day.

We hope you can join us, we invite people to help make this space live up to its potential and be a resource for the community to share in the struggle for justice.

Newport Action Centre crew.

Stop NATO Sabcat action against austerity

Report taken from Indymedia.

cat litter and debris at the jobcentre

cat litter and debris at the jobcentre

A small but lively crowd made its way through the streets of Newport, complete with soundsystem, sab-cat masks, and the ever-present PLOs.

Leaflets were given out en-route to onlookers (some bemused, some interested, many both!) and the megaphone was used to explain the links between NATO, the cuts, inequality and the whole rotten system.

When we reached the jobcentre the door was already guarded.

The atmosphere was boosted as a heap of ripped up NATO propaganda appeared in the doorway, as did a large quantity of dry cat litter! Just the thing for a system that stinks..

At this point the police tried to make an arrest, eventually succeeding.

We continued on to the army recruitment office, which has a jobcentre next door, where chants included ‘our kids are not cannon fodder, their kids are not collateral damage’. Again it was protected by police.

At this point rumours of a member of the public being accidentally injured during the events were going around. Many of us were quite shocked by this news and the demo was cut short – no doubt many other interesting places could have been next if we’d chosen to continue, but it did not seem appropriate.

Thankfully it emerged later that the injury was in fact a minor one that did not require hospital treatment, to everyone’s relief.

Overall, a small but important part of the week of action. For more on the links between NATO and austerity see:
http://network23.org/stopnatocymru/files/2014/07/SNC_BW_newport.pdf