The social activist group, Sisters Uncut, have been evicted from the disused library that they were occupying on Cheltenham Road this morning.
Sisters Uncut are an activist group who campaign for the survivors of domestic abuse and have been in occupation of the building since 20 March.
16 members of the group were awoken this morning by six bailiffs arrived at 5.00. A spokesperson for the group said that after initially being removed from the building, the group decided to enter the property again to protest on the roof with masks and banners.
Our reporter Helen West spoke to a member of the group:
“New approach to housing”
The Mayor of Bristol, Marvin Rees, responded to the groups concerns with a statement: “I pledged to improve housing priority for victims of domestic violence as part of my election campaign and since then I’ve been working with many organisations, charities and experts on this topic.”
“I met with Sisters Uncut to discuss their campaign, I listened to their views. We share many aims and I took their feedback, along with that of many others, into account when Cabinet agreed a new approach to housing priority.”
Massive thanks to all who supported our occupation. Sadly it has come to an end. This defeat will not deter us, join us to keep fighting. pic.twitter.com/gn10J847PL
— BristolSistersUncut (@Bristol_sisters) March 31, 2017
The occupation was in protest of Bristol City Council’s plan to allow developers to renovate the site and build 36 flats. The library was closed on 28 February 2017 and is being demolished after 53 years in the community.
Spencer Rose, a local resident who lives next door to the library, said he was in support of the group. “I had posted on Facebook that I think it should be used as an intellectual squat when it originally closed and I think things like this are important – if the council are going to take away our amenities it should be put to good use, rather than to just add to the gentrification of the area.”
Demolition workers on the site refused to comment on the eviction.