Squatters planning to ‘re-open’ Camden’s Black Cap
Squatters are reportedly planning to “re-open” Camden’s iconic gay pub the Black Cap, despite not having legal ownership of the site.
The London’s pub was built in 1889, and is one of London’s oldest continually operating LGBT venues, after it became popular with gay men in the 1960s.
However, the Black Cap pub closed its doors in April after a battle over a proposed redevelopment which lasted several months.
Twelve squatters occupied the pub earlier this month – to oppose the “gentrification of Camden”.
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According to a public event posted on Facebook, the group of occupiers reportedly plan to open the venue back up for a cabaret night.
The event states: “The Black Cap was violently closed despite the fact that the community wanted and loved her gaping openness… now she is spread wide again: unofficial, unsanctioned and unapproved by anyone, but accessible to all who want to come and celebrate a continuation of her 200 year history right up inside her.”
“Sick of being thrown out of your beloved venues and homes? Tired of being treated like your lifestyle and culture don’t matter? Well …
“MOTHER BLACK CAP’S BACK! … AND SHE’S PISSED OFF!”
The squatters are apparently planning “a night of cabaret, music and celebration” at the event.
It adds: “Disrespect for Mother Black Cap and her guests will not be tolerated! Protect our spaces, protect each other.”
It is not an offence in itself in the UK to squat on a commercial premises – but operating the building as an unlicensed venue could likely constitute an offence.