Opening in 2015, DIY Space for London is a socially-minded community space in South Bermondsey, offering up an eclectic programme of events, gigs activities, meet-ups… and a healthy dose of radical activism thrown in for good measure. It also hosts an in-house record store, Tome Records and the Print Collective, which offers monthly workshops and cool gatherings in all things print related (think book binding, screen printing and using darkroom photography equipment).
A quick browse of the events shows exactly what this place is about: pay-what-you-can yoga, queer mental health socials, hardcore punk gigs… this is truly a space for everyone. You do need to become a member to attend or put on an event, but it costs just £2 to sign-up and takes just 48 hours to complete. Everyone is welcome.
This venue is all about inclusivity and it’s entirely run by its members on a volunteer basis, all of whom have an equal say in decisions. DFSL typically hosts events and groups that wouldn’t be able to access or afford other spaces – whether that’s niche bands or grassroots activist groups. The on-site office space is let out to community organisations at very low rates. Current residents include Constant Flux – dedicated to promoting the learning disabled music scene and Risk Agency – a construction charity working to equip young people with skills to become the change-makers of tomorrow.
Physical as well as social accessibility is also an important founding principle of DSFL and it was first volunteer-run venue to achieve Bronze status on the Charter of Best Practice from Attitude Is Everything – a charity that improves Deaf and disabled people’s access to live music.
Here’s what they said
“The space works to promote the ideas of mutual aid (helping each other) and cooperation (working together). Providing a welcoming space for everyone, including those whose voices and contributions are not always heard or appreciated, is a top priority for us.”