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Squatters occupying The Bohemia pub in North Finchley claim victory after eviction hearing at Barnet County Court is adjourned
Squatters occupying The Bohemia pub claimed a victory as eviction proceedings against them were adjourned at court this morning.
The Occupy protesters, who took over the closed North Finchley pub in September, persuaded the judge to postpone any ruling on their occupation until further representations had been made.
The group was issued a court summons last week after administrators for Antic Ltd, the current leaseholders of the building, began eviction proceedings.
But, led by self-proclaimed community activist Pete Phoenix and backed by more than 20 supporters at court this morning, the group argued they were licensees, not trespassers, pointing to the fact the owners of the building have been in discussions with them for several weeks.
Deputy District Judge Joshi adjourned proceedings this morning and the parties are due to find out later today when and where the case will now be heard.
Smartly-dressed solicitors from central London law firm Speechly Bircham, representing Antic Ltd, found themselves opposite the dreadlocked figure of Mr Phoenix, who says he has been occupying and reclaiming empty public buildings for more than 20 years.
He previously led a successful campaign against Barnet Council to hand Friern Barnet Library back to the public following a five-month occupation of the locally listed building.
Following today’s hearing, he said: “We’ve had a victory again. It is a very complex case that could never have been dealt with in ten minutes this morning.
“We argued they (the owners) have effectively given us licence to be there by showing tenants around while we are there and entering into discussions with us.
“We’ve repeatedly asked for mediation with the administrators and hopefully this adjournment will make them see sense and come to an agreement with us.”
Solicitors from Speechly Bircham declined to comment on the case.
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