I walked past the Bell Pub on webber street on sunday and noticed a that there were legal take notices up on the windows saying that the premises had been taken over. Does that mean it has been squatted? Has anyone else noticed that it is not operating as a pub anymore?
Yes - saw the notice on Monday night on my way home from work. That was my first thought - squatters - but I'm sure the pub was still open until recently, so it seems odd that squatters would move in so quickly.
It might be the former staff and management refusing to move. I think it was held by Punch Taverns and had temporary staff in post. The 'for sale by auction' was up until recently. I will see if it's open tonight.
The squatters have put up posters saying that the Bell has closed and will be turned into luxury flats, and that they are squatting in the property in the meantime because they don't earn much money.
I think I met the squatters tonight. There was a crowd of young people with some incredibly loud speakers under the railway arch at the corner of Webber St and Belvedere Buildings. They were blasting out Missy Elliot at deafening volumes while drinking and generally having a bit of a party. It was so loud that a ton of people came out of their houses to find out what was going on, and my neighbour told them off because they'd woken up his kids (it was 9.30pm or so). They very reluctantly agreed to leave but one of them told us they were heading to the Bell if we wanted to join the party. He was shushed by his friend which made me think they didn't want to let on that they're the squatters.
I don't have much of a problem with squatters if they maintain the property, but this wasn't a very good way to demonstrate that they want to be responsible members of the community.
I'm surprised as I had heard the Bell squatters were part of the same crew that have been occupying the Colorama building in Lancaster St for nigh on a year now, it must be. They are very respectful and seem to have made a pretty nice home of the place. They are often to be found sitting outside on Library Street just being and not disturbing anyone. They had a party of couple of weeks ago on a Sunday and put up posters inviting their neighbours (us)to join them for a jolly afternoon.
So, my point is if the Bell lot are part of the same, I'd be surprised if it was them hanging out further down Webber Street and annoying people. Surely, if they were from the pub, they would be having the party/session "at home". It sounds like a bunch of liggers to me.
I was a bit surprised too because the posters up in the Bell made the squatters sound like they'd be ok neighbours. The people with the loud music definitely said they were headed to the Bell though, so make of that what you will!
Boroman are you in Belvedere Buildings? This is definitely a quiet part of town, we're very lucky.