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(en) Australia, News from Melbourne: Infoshop re-opening

Date Mon, 01 Sep 2008 18:27:16 +0300



Melbourne's Barricade Anarchist Infoshop is re-opening its doors after a long
hiatus, at its new, permanent home in Northcote. Barricade is holding a
reopening party on the 13th of September, and will then be open regularly with a
bookshop and infoshop, extensive anarchist library and archive, as well as a
social space for meetings, scheming, networking, film nights, gigs and events.
Barricade opened its doors for the first time at 115 Sydney Road, Brunswick on
February 4, 1995; the outcome of several years preparation by a loose
association of local anarchists. Notably, Barricade is the fourth such shop to
open in Melbourne since the beginning of the 1970s.

Barricade's opening doesn't go unnoticed, as just five months later, on July 3,
police raid the premises (with an unsigned warrant). Three items of stock are
confiscated: a pamphlet (Left Libertarianism's Lavender Lineage) and two
t-shirts, one with the word 'fuck' on it, the other with a picture of a penis. A
worker is charged with selling 'obscene' materials. A week later, on July 11, in
a further act of harassment, neo-Nazis smash the shop's windows. As a result,
for almost two years, the infoshop looks like a real live barricade, with
'temporary' iron sheets placed over the front windows. Still, the infoshop
continues to function.
The smashing of the shop's windows, and their replacement with temporary
hoardings, is followed by various forms of low-level harassment, including the
painting of swastikas on the shop's front door on Invasion Day, January 26,
1996. An anti-fascist demonstration is held in Brunswick soon after, and marches
to Barricade in solidarity.
Finally, in June 1997, at the end of a long but eventually successful battle
with the local council, the shop is fitted with bullet proof plexi-glass. Having
survived police and fascist intimidation, so ends the first chapter in
Barricade's history.

Barricade then moved into a small studio at Irene community art space in
Brunswick East, operating tentatively until 2006. In late 2006, Barricade
collective members squatted a social centre in Coburg at an empty funeral home
which was renamed 'The Wake', with the aim of holding benefit gigs and opening
Barricade once more to the public. After a successful two months holding benefit
parties most weekends, the Wake was violently evicted and raided by police,
along with other squats around the city, on the eve of the G Twenty protests on
November 17.

In 2007, the Melbourne Anarchist Club purchased a property in Northcote, with
the aim of creating an anarchist social centre and a home for the
Anarcho-Syndicalist Federation and Barricade Infoshop. After several months of
renovations, the space is nearing completion and Barricade is ready to open its
doors once more, this time permanently.

If you're in Melbourne, come along to the opening party on Saturday the 13th of
September at 5pm, there will be Food not Bombs, drinks, music, plus exciting new
books and zines, and super cheap old stock.
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