Thursday, 8 November 2012

London Anarchist Bookfair Collective's reply to us

Below is the full response from the London Anarchist Bookfair collective to our e-mail in our post entitled 'Appeal to Responsible Anarchists':

Dear Brian, 
You are not going to like this. You’ll understand that we are pretty pissed off about anyone behaving stupidly at the book fair but also that we are equally pissed off when we get your email demanding money and threatening court action. We don’t put on the book fair for this. You can't pretend your email is 'attempting to resolve things in a comradely manner'. We can understand that you are upset, just as we can understand why Sally is upset. But, generally, we are not going to act as police, judge or jury for the anarchist movement. The dispute is between yourself and Sally and as such it needs to be the two of you who sort this matter out.


• It's not our responsibility to recover or look after any of your stock or anyone else’s and certainly not our responsibility to compensate you for any damages or losses to your stock and we won’t be doing so.

• The 'contract' is just that you pay for a stall. The rest is your responsibility.

• We do not have any "contractual duty of care". This is nonsense and a court will find it nonsense too. We try and take responsibility for health and safety of all bookfair goers regardless of whether they have paid for a stall or not over things like overcrowding etc- but we had no more of a "duty of care" to you than to anyone else there ( as anarchists we believe we all have a social duty of care to eachother and this would probably include both not threatening people or throwing mayonaise over them, and not writing shit about dead comrades simply to wind up people up)

• There is no point in writing to us for your demands to the AF. None of us are in the AF or are likely to be admitted at present. You can approach them directly.

• We will continue to make our own decisions about who can and can't have stalls and are no more going to be swayed by your demands than by any of the other lobbies/approaches we get.

• We don’t intend to ban the AF or any of the individuals involved however unimpressed we are with their behaviour.

• Similarly we didn’t ban you from the bookfair this time despite a request and do not intend to do so in future.

• However, as you are reading far more into an agreement to book a stall at the bookfair than can conceivably be there you have to agree that it would be stupid at present for us to let you have a stall in future.

• If you are able to confirm that you have understood that the only agreement you are entering into when you book a stall at the bookfair is that all it is is a table, then we should be able to continue to let you book stalls in future. if you still want to.

Put simply, people need to grow up. We think this could be sorted sensibly - eg both of you talking, not reprinting the offending paper, coming to some agreement about the pamphlets etc, a quiet pint and an acceptance that what supposedly unites you is meant to be far more important than what divides you. And we can do the same too next year- if any of us have spare moment.That would be a comradely manner.

Good Luck. 

London Anarchist Bookfair collective
For an independent report on what happened at the London Bookfair in October 2012, readers should go to:

Five Leaves Blog: Salad (cream) days


1 comment:

von Ferrary said...

This is a totally reasonable response from the Bookfair Collective to what is a silly spat. Time to hang up your hat and move on Brian - while you have a shred of dignity left, and NV has a shred of credibility. You can only make things worse if you carry on like this