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21.06.2021, Words by Billy Ward

Peckham's Rising Sun Collective release EP to save beloved community art space from developers

"We now need to raise £230,000 in under a month or lose the space for good..."

South East London art space and collective The Rising Sun have released a new EP with the goal of saving their community space from being converted into luxury flats.

Based in the former Rising Sun pub on the boundary of Peckham and New Cross, the underground art and music collective has hosted some of London’s best parties over the last five years, welcoming through their doors the likes of AJ Tracey, Obongjayar, Yussef Dayes, Novelist and many more. As well as providing affordable housing for local residents, the building is an LGBTQ+ friendly, interdisciplinary cultural hub and studio complex that has helped launch the careers of a range of artists.

The new pay-what-you-can mixtape will give friends, supporters, and newcomers the chance to save this cultural hub, and the arts community that has grown around it, from being sold by the landlord to luxury developers. More than three-quarters of the £1.1 million needed to buy the building has already been raised by the Rising Sun Collective, however, a further £230,000 is needed to bring the space into community ownership.

“We now need to raise £230,000 in under a month (by 9th July) or lose the space for good. The property was very close to falling down a familiar route of being turned into unaffordable luxury flats, but we’ve instead agreed with the vendor to purchase the property ourselves, securing cooperative housing for up to 18 people in perpetuity, as well as building an independent, interdisciplinary cultural hub and studio complex for south east London,” states the collective on their website.

“We believe that the dark days of this crisis can lead to a better future, and we can make better, fairer cities that support people and diverse ways of life. The Rising Sun cooperative housing can embody an alternative to both private renting and owner-occupation, in democratic control, while providing environmentally-pioneering homes for 10-18 people,” they add.

Titled ‘Rising Sun Mixtape vol. 2’, the seventeen-track EP features artists from the Rising Sun Collective and invited guests responding to the theme ‘emo songs’. Not pinned down by any one particular genre or sound, the project instead explores the sombre mood of living through the pandemic .

Every artist on the mixtape has agreed to donate all proceeds towards saving the Rising Sun, and project can be bought on Bandcamp here.

More info on the Rising Sun Collective and how to help save the Rising Sun can be found here. Also check out the Crowdfunder page.

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