Saturday, 20 August 2011
The Common Place, Leeds
"Our aim is to create a place in the city centre in which together people can enjoy a sense of community, affordable entertainment and food; a non-commercial place to relax, talk, be creative, meet people and find information on political campaigns, issues and actions.
The Common Place is run horizontally and voluntarily. By this we mean without leaders and hierarchies and by everyone for everyone. Acting and thinking in a non-authoritarian and non-discriminatory way does not necessarily come naturally, and since we are educated to blindly follow rules and leaders, we believe it important to develop the principles and skills needed for non-authoritarian working practices and relationships. The Common Place is committed to radical social change and equality.
Nobody gets paid, and nobody is making any profit. There is no 'executive': the fortnightly members' meetings on Thursdays are the main decision making body. This reflects the kind of society we want to live in – it’s all about self-organisation and mutual aid.
The Common Place attempts to be flexible, pragmatic, open to creativity, experimentation and new/different ideas; people are involved for different reasons with different expectations and so it's constantly changing and evolving.
An atmosphere of tolerance and respect is of the utmost importance here. Any kind of discriminatory, aggressive or violent behaviour is not welcome. The Common Place is open to all individuals to use, but representational political parties, profit-focused or repressive organisations may not use the space.
This is an inclusive place where we ask members and guests to respect diversity. We want everyone to feel comfortable here."