We are an open space where people can be comfortable with themselves, express their creativity, hang out, make new friends, network and attend various workshops and events. Everyone is welcome,  whatever culture or background you have experienced, here you can share your journey and we will share ours.  The first spark of positive change in our world is when we meet and connect with others, sharing our joy and passing on knowledge.

The building was built in 1699  and was once a merchant’s house. It then became the famous Elizabeth Fry women’s refuge. She worked hard in the 1800’s to reform the conditions for women in prison, and you’ll find her face on today’s five pound (£5) notes. The building later became a working mans club. Since then it has been left the owners to fall to pieces and this beautiful beautiful building has been falling apart since. It was squatted in 2009/10 and was opened as a successful social center for 100 months before it got evicted. It is now a home to twelve people and is running as an open to everyone community centre.

We are non profit and run entirely on donations. All events, activities and workshops are free, however we do ask that if you can afford to donate, please do and it will benefit those who cannot.

If you have any ideas, or wish to get involved, feel free to get in contact…   and come and pay us a visit.

New email at: 195mare@squat.net

195 Mare Street, E8 3QE



Come and visit us and Keep posted for updates..  

Residents/crash space

Please don’t ask us if you can live with us. This is not a crash space. We wish we could say yes, but we cannot house everyone who turns up at the front door. We are a community center and we run activities and events. We are not a hostel.   New residents are carefully handpicked by current residents. We are currently working on creating guestrooms so we can host more people who wish to stay with us for short periods of time.

Journalists/ photographers/ students

Please do not contact us with requests to takes pictures or to write your dissertation/thesis on our project. We’re really sorry but we simply do not have the time to host that many people- we get over 3 requests a week and there is simply nobody to guide you trough the process. If we want to write about 195 or make any documentation we will seek it out ourselves.

2 responses to “About

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: