Barbican Community Centre is in Fibbers until September
What and why
On 12 August 2021, representatives of the Barbican Community Centre (BCC) attended a hearing at York County Court for a possession claim brought by the owners and developers of the Fibbers site at 3-5 Toft Green, Toft Green Developments Ltd and North Star. If the order had been granted, the claimants would have been able to employ bailiffs to remove people from the Fibbers site. However, we are delighted to announce that the BCC will remain at Fibbers until at least the 2nd of September, as the claimants have, yet again, failed to follow the proper legal procedure in applying for the possession order.
As we have stated several times, all the eviction notices we have been served thus far have been entirely invalid. They were served improperly and we were not at any point given notice of court or a chance to defend ourselves. Since we were not given the opportunity to submit a written defence prior to the hearing today, the judge adjourned the hearing until the 2nd of September, and the BCC cannot be removed from Fibbers at any point before then.
We are grateful that the court has decided to ensure proper procedure is followed, and given us time to submit our defence statement and associated evidence. We look forward to being able to make our defence properly on September 2nd, but will continue to engage with Mr John H. Neal - the claimant in this possession claim and director of Toft Green Developments Ltd - to reach an amicable agreement regarding the creation of a community centre. In the meantime, we will not leave the site on the basis of improperly served and invalid possession orders and we will resist any illegal eviction attempts mounted against us.
We are delighted that we will be able to hold events at the Fibbers site in the next three weeks without fear of eviction, lawful or unlawful, and welcome the community into the space we have built together. We want to do as much as we can with the space while we are able to stay.
Although we may not be able to stay at Fibbers in the long-term, we know that the BCC will be stronger as a result of this experience. Through holding this space we have been able to connect with more members of our community and engage with those we otherwise would not have been able to reach. One way or another, whether at Fibbers or elsewhere, we will continue building this kind of community-led and regenerative space that York so desperately needs.
The morning of 12 August 2021
The Barbican Community Centre (BCC)