Squatting: the real story


100 page coffee table book on squatting in England and Wales, published in 1980.

The book includes useful histories of squatting in the 1970s (and previously) as well as personal accounts, photos etc.

Edited by Nick Wates and Christian Wolmar, with a mixed bag of contributors including anarchist Colin Ward, peace campaigner Ann Pettitt... and Piers Corbyn.

PDF courtesy of https://squattheplanet.com/


  • 1 Introducing squatting by Nick Wates
  • 2 The squatters
  • A decade of squatting: The story of squatting in Britain since 1968. by Steve Platt
  • 3 Setting the stage: The London Squatters campaign, thuggery in Redbridge, the hippies of Piccadilly, licensed squatting.
  • 4 Here there and everywhere: The boom in squatting, opposing property speculators, taking over the street, not just for homes, squatting in style.
  • 5 Mounting oppostion: Property owners on the offensive, media myths, antisquatting hysteria.
  • 6 Fighting back: Squatters organise, local squatting groups, campaigning, Advisory Service for Squatters, All London Squatters and the Squatters Action Council.
  • 7 A whole new ball game: Living with the new law, the London Squatters Union, amnesty for 5,000, co-ops, squatting lives on.
  • Some history: Squatting in Britain before 1968.
  • 8 The early squatters by Colin Ward - Squatting from the Middle Ages to the Second World War.
  • 9 The post war squatters by Andrew Friend - 1945/6: the Vigilante movement, the occupation of service
    camps, taking over luxury blocks of flats.
  • Success on the streets: Four successful squatting campaigns
  • 10 Better than the telly any day by Ann Pettitt - Outwitting a private landlord in London’s East End,
    Myrdle and Parfett Streets.
  • 11 We won, you should fight them too by Piers Corbyn - Grinding down the Greater London Council in West London, Elgin Avenue.
  • 12 Victory Villa by Nick Anning and Jill Simpson - Challenging the planners in South London, Villa Road.
  • 13 Is there life after squatting? by Tristan Wood - Winning a permanent home in Central London, Seymour Buildings.
  • The law: The effect of the law on squatters
  • 14 The erosion of squatters rights by David Watkinson - Unlawful but not illegal, the Act of 1381, the law tightens its grip, the Criminal Law Act.
  • A chosen way of life: More than a roof – squatting can be good for you.
  • 15 Using the space by Andrew Ingham - Fantasy and romance, self-help repairs, making use of space, opportunity to experiment.
  • 16 Learning to learn by Pat Moan - Confessions of a layabout, hippie, anarchist, woman
  • 17 Outpost of a new culture by Tom Osborn - Squatting communities as an alternative way of life.
  • 18 The squatters estate agency by Heathcote Williams - The inside story of Ruff Tuff Creem Puff, the only
    estate agency for squatters.
  • 19 From skippering to squatting by Celia Brown - Squatting as an alternative to hostels and lodging houses
  • Squatting around the world: It’s not just Britain – looking further afield.
  • 20 Everybody’s doing it by Mark Gimson - Squatting in the Netherlands, Ireland, Denmark, Portugal, Italy, Hong Kong and other places.
  • The background
  • The housing crisis – a brief summary
  • Empty property – facts and figures
  • Myth and fact – statistics on squatting and squatters
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Index